TWO BECOME ONE. Godwin Bonge Muhwezi, managing partner at Brand Power, and Dorothy Arineitwe, a business administrator at Viscar industrial capacity limited, walked down the aisle of St Luke’s Church, Ntinda. The love birds told ESTHER BRIDGET NAKALYA about their love journey and unforgettable wedding moments
How and where did you meet?
Godwin: I knew her family. We were neighbours in Kabale but Dorothy was much younger. We did not meet until much later when she was in her first year at Uganda Christian University, Mukono. I was working in Arusha, Tanzania. I went to visit her then but we didn’t date until much later. We simply kept in touch.
Dorothy: I have known Godwin all my life, by name. We had so many pictures of him among other children at my elder sister’s birthday parties. Much later, while I was at campus (university) his sister came to see me; my mum had given her my number. She told me Godwin would be around the next weekend. The weekend came and they came to see me together though I could not recognise him when he was outside my hostel.
How long did you date?
Godwin: Six years, we kept in touch. We would meet once in a while. The one night I told her I was in love with her, hell broke loose. She was surprised because according to her, she thought of me as a friend so we dated for about a month before I proposed.
Dorothy: Dating! Hehe my friends have always asked the same. They say I hid my boyfriend from them all this while. Well Godwin insists we dated but I do not remember. We had always been in touch and six years later, he told me he loved me and proposed 20 days later.
How did you propose to her?
Godwin: I proposed to her on June 24, 2016, eight months before our wedding. She invited me for a concert, so I went shopping for a ring. After the concert, I offered to drop her home. Before we reached there, I stopped the car and proposed to her.
What was her reaction?
Godwin: She was shocked and asked me whether I could keep the ring until sometime later. I could not take it back. She kept the ring and she neither said yes nor no.
Dorothy: I was petrified and shocked, staring at the most pretty thing I had ever seen and it was supposed to be my engagement ring. Through the wedding preparations I kept telling him I had never said yes. The yes finally came on Valentine’s Day this year four days to our traditional wedding.
What interested you in each other ?
Godwin: What first struck me about Dorothy was her beauty. Then when I got to know her better, I found she was intelligent, humble, compassionate, simple, and above all God fearing which were the very qualities I wanted my wife to have.
Dorothy: From the many times we met, he was always as respectful, he is very calm and an exceptional listener. He was always smart, kempt, and intelligent and he loved me a lot. He still does even more. Godwin fears the Lord; he is thoughtful, patient with me and has a unique sense of humor. He is awesome.
How many guests did you invite?
Godwin: We planned for 350 guests. Dorothy drew up her guest list, I did the same and we merged the list and it came up to about 300 guests. We added 50 guests to cater for any excesses such as children.
What is your most memorable wedding moment?
Dorothy: The vows; we chose to have our wedding vows in Rukiga, our local language although the service was in English. Then my dad walking me down the aisle. I cried my heart out. And, oh, I loved the cake, it was huge and colourful.
Godwin: Unveiling her in front of family and friends. I was so overjoyed because we were going to live as husband and wife for the rest of our lives.
What was the price of the decoration?
Godwin: Shs 4.5m by Blue Label Events.
What was the colour theme?
Dorothy: When we were discussing colour, Godwin suggested purple. Then, I chose orange because it is bright and vibrant. We asked the decorator to use a lot of white and splashes of orange and purple.
Who managed your photography?
Dorothy: Bennie, our family friend. He took awesome pictures at my sister’s kuhingira. He made our pictures memorable, extremely creative and above all comfortable.
Godwin: Benjamin Beinomugisha of Bennie Photography. It cost Shs 1.5m.
How much did your cake cost?
Dorothy: I chose the cake. Rumi Cake Shop had baked my sister’s graduation cake and it was tasty. They are also quite affordable.
Godwin: It cost us shs 2m.
How much did you spend on attire?
Godwin: All together Shs 4.2m, best man spent Shs2.1m.
Dorothy: Matron spent Shs 760,000 and the bridesmaids spent 1.2m on their dresses.
Who was your designer?
Dorothy: The Groom near Cham Towers.
Godwin: I had my gown tailored and shipped from China with the help of D&C Bridal Shop.
Who comprised your entourage?
Dorothy: I had four maids, two sisters and two friends. My sister Jemimah Kyobutungi was my matron.
Godwin: My best man Kenneth Byaruhanga is my childhood friend.
Did you have any debts after the wedding?
Dorothy: We worked within our budget. Friends and family were supportive, it was overwhelming.
What challenges did you encounter?
Godwin: The decorator could not avail the seats we wanted for the high table. We came in to the sight of the very seats we had rejected as they looked exaggerated. We had not made a play list, so the DJ used his discretion and the music was not what we would have loved to be played.
Dorothy: I did not realise it until much later after the wedding that I did not have my cake. It had been stolen.
What did you learn from the premarital counselling?
Godwin: actually the best advice for me was after the wedding. On a certain Sunday, we had a visiting reverend and after service he met with us and gave us what he called the 3Cs; criticising, comparing and complaining. He said, once we avoided these, we would be happy.
What is your advice to those intending to get married?
Godwin; Know what you want. During wedding preparations you will have so many people give their ideas of what your wedding should be like.
There is commercialisation of weddings with service providers quoting exorbitant prices, so look out for value for money.
Dorothy: Pay special attention to your dress code; it should reflect you at your best.
The music too and photography should create lasting memories.
Dorothy and Godwin exchanged their marriage vows using a beautiful symbolic pair of rings which cost Shs 1m. The gold rings looked classy.
The ladies wore long voluminous purple silk dresses with a lace detail on the chest. This, complimented with little orange hair flowers, the colours blended perfectly.
Dorothy and Godwin cut a snow white staircase triangular cake with orange floral decorated upon it. Such a delicious look for a dessert! The cake was baked by Rumi Cake Shop at Shs.2m.
Choose bridal accessories whose details can make everything else right. Dorothy wore pearl ear clip-ons, a tiara and metal bangle with two pearls at the end. She chose not to wear a necklace because her gown had detail on the bust.
Too much of anything can go wrong. Avoid looking like a doll on your wedding day; your spouse needs to recognise you. Dorothy looked stunning with her natural makeup. Her calm red lipstick blended with her complexion.
Comfort should always come first on your big day, while selecting your bridal shoes. Dorothy wore a silver pair of pumps with a bling detail at the tip. She was comfortable enough to dance her day away.