MANILA - Online micro-blogging site Twitter was abuzz with news of the wedding between Sen. Manuel "Mar" Roxas II and Korina Sanchez, a few hours before the wedding on Tuesday.
At about 2:30 p.m., half an hour before the wedding was scheduled to start, Roxas left a message on his Twitter page while en route to the Sto. Domingo Church, where the couple plan to wed.
"Thanks for the support guys. Just had my last lunch as a bachelor. En route to church with my son, my best man Paolo," he said. Paolo is his son by a former girlfriend.
On Monday, the night before the wedding, Roxas tweeted: "What's a 52-year-old guy to do the night before his wedding? Tying the knot in this age of Twitter is certainly something haha."
Over the weekend, the groom and his family spent some quality time before the wedding.
On October 25 (Sunday), Roxas left a message on Twitter saying he had a "great time playing golf with Paolo," and that his family "spent the evening" at the cemetery with Wawa, the Senator's grandmother.
"Wish she could spend Tuesday with us," he said.
Tweet by tweet
Some guests at the wedding have even taken to giving brief blow-by-blow accounts of the wedding experience.
Manolo Quezon III, an avid Twitter user, gave regular updates about the sights and sounds at the Sto. Domingo Church - from the time guests and fans started arriving to when they settled down and mingled inside the church.
"It's an air-kissing festival... Indestructible [former Sen. Jovito] Salonga schmoozing," he tweeted. "Guests get issued a fan and a program. Wedding cake on display looking very concrete-like."
Early on, the couple's godmothers and godfathers took seats on the first 3 rows of pews that are reserved for immediate family and members of the wedding entourage.
"Ninongs and ninangs" include Salonga, Chief Justice Reynato Puno, ABS-CBN CEO Eugenio "Gabby" Lopez III, Sen. Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino III, Cheche Lazaro, Ruby Roxas, Rosa Rosal, Helen Costales, and Maria Fores.
"At Sto. Domingo Church. Videowalls outside for hordes of celebrity-watchers," Quezon said, describing the 4 large video screens set up along tents outside the church so guests outside can watch live coverage of the wedding ceremony.
"New high altar since last at Sto. Domingo, in incongruous Gothic revival style," he added.
He said the acoustics are bad inside the church, as musical guests like the Madrigal Singers and the Manila Philharmonic Orchestra readied their songs.
He also remarked that there was a black butterfly fluttering around the church. "Good or bad omen?" he asked.
'Pink dress brigade'
Sardonically, Quezon remarked at the waves of guests clad in various Filipiniana wear in shades of pink, fuschia, violet, and orange. He described the group as the "pink dress brigade."
"I don't approve of these modern ternos and Maria Claras that look like they're made of European materials. Striking lady in pink Moro dress dripping pearls and sequins," he said.
And as the wedding was set to start, and the pews were filled, Quezon remarked: "Three worlds collide: relatives of groom looking disoriented, media people all chirpy, officialdom straddling old society and 4th estate."
Later on, high-profile guests arrived, to the shrieks of fans outside the church, including Kris Aquino, US Ambassador Kristie Kenney, Ralph Recto and his wife Batangas Gov. Vilma Santos, Bayan Muna Party List Rep. Teddy Casiño and Sen. Miguel Zubiri.
Other users on Twitter, however, shot criticisms at the couple.
"Parang pampulitika lang 'yong kasal na 'yon. Wala nang maniniwala kay Mar Roxas," said one user on Twitter.
Another user jokingly asked that Twitter should block all messages pertaining to the "Mar-Korina wedding."
Most, however, sent a flurry of "congratulations" and "best wishes" to Sanchez and Roxas on their wedding day.
Curious Twitter users also said they were actively searching for updates on the wedding, with some even asking for live streaming coverage of the event.
Interest in the event stemmed from a variety of reasons.
Some just wanted to watch what is tagged as the "People's Wedding", while others simply wanted to know how the expected turnout for the event would affect traffic in their area. Report by abs-cbnNEWS.com