A UK bride and groom were left awkwardly staring upward at their wedding when a pesky barn owl flew off with their rings and took a nap in the church rafters.
The bride had hired falconers to bring Darcey the owl, tie the rings to its feet with ribbons, and coax it toward the altar with a gauntlet at a recent ceremony in Sherston, Wiltshire, according to the Western Daily Press.
However, the newspaper reported the ceremony at Holy Cross Church became a funny lesson in the poor etiquette of barn owls at weddings when the creature, oblivious to the atmosphere of elegance and surprise it was supposed to contribute to the occasion, decided it would rather be sleeping.
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The church vicar, Rev Chris Bryan, told Western Daily Press the owl flew up to the top of the church and stayed there for about an hour.
"It presumably thought 'I’m a barn owl, this is like a barn,'" Bryan told the Western Daily Press.
The falconers were unable to convince the owl to come back down. However, the couple had anticipated their feathered friend might not behave, and they pulled out their emergency set of backup rings to finish the ceremony while the owl had its beauty rest.
Birds, while they're a nice idea, have muddled up a wedding or two before. Sandy Malone, a wedding planner in Puerto Rico who blogs advice, once shared her stories of frustration dealing with lovebirds that wouldn't fly, dozens of bowls of fish and horses that stepped on wedding dresses.
Occasionally, uninvited animals crash the big day, such as the wild squirrel that tried to destroy the cake at a California wedding several years ago, according to a CNN story.