We’re No Strangers to Love (at Pickering)

By Rebecca Smith

For regular readers of the Pickering newsletter, perhaps my longtime partner Paul doesn’t feel like a complete stranger…  After all, one of the perks (?) of being in a relationship with me is that periodically Paul’s name and picture make it into one of my articles, as I often share stories about our life here in the blog.  And at this point, Paul has attended a decade’s worth of Pickering company events!  He was our volunteer Pickering photographer for the Onyx PCX launch party, among other support roles.  Over the last decade, as Paul has become part of my family, he has also become part of the Pickering Labs family.

PLI group picture from the wedding!

Paul and I are so appreciative that many members of this great Pickering Labs family were able to be present for our wedding.  It would not have been the same celebration without them!  And certainly, many folks here had been long awaiting the chance to attend this event.  Saji and Anita, for example, have often politely (?) inquired as to when the party would finally occur, since Paul and I were engaged for quite a long time.  After several years of COVID interfering with company holiday parties, it was especially fun to get fancy with the team and spend time with their partners, family and friends. 

Over the years, the PLI team has been such a big part of my life and journey together with Paul… Dating all the way back to the beginning, even!  Paul and I were married in October 2022 on our ten-year anniversary, so one of the earliest ‘boyfriend hurdles’ he actually overcame was gaining approval at his first Pickering holiday party!  I’ll forever cherish my memories of Michael Pickering’s delight upon first meeting Paul, at that very same party in December 2012.  They instantly bonded over their relative statures (I’m quite tall).  Michael pulled me aside to tell me how thrilled he was that I was finally dating a shorter man.  He predicted that Paul would be, as my grandmother says, “a keeper,” and that he would make me very happy.  As it so happens, Michael was right. 

Holiday Party 2012, with Michael (left) and then Paul (right).
Paul making me happy ten years later, as predicted!

One of the nice things about taking our sweet time to tie the knot was my apparent complete lack of nerves.  I was all smiles getting ready that morning, as you can see!  Not a worry on my face! 

Getting ready on the big day…

Thanks to the marvelous assistance of our wedding planner and enthusiastic participation of our guests, I’d say the ceremony went off without a hitch, too!

Wedding ceremony, capturing those “I do” feelings!

Right after our ceremony seemed like the perfect time for group pictures, although I do hope that the Pickering team didn’t miss too much of cocktail hour.  Farmstead did a fantastic job with the passed appetizers, so hopefully Jim and the team here got enough to eat!

Anita and Gaby giving Paul a congratulatory toast!

Pickering Labs and our employees are such a huge part of my life.  I am so grateful to have these wonderful people around me, and I don’t just mean only on this celebratory occasion.  They lift me up, and as we support each other, it provides true purpose for my work.  Being part of this team gives me passion for what I do every single day.  The vision Michael Pickering had for this special workplace is a legacy which inspires all of us to put our best efforts towards our products and customers, so that they can impact the world with their essential work.  But these individuals also inspire me, with their warmth and dedication, as well as their commitment and integrity.  When they say “Welcome to the Pickering Labs family,” what they mean is “we will show up at your wedding two hours away, on time and ready to cheer for you, your spouse, and all of your ridiculous music choices!” 

Pickering team, I love you all dearly.  Oh yeah, and I love Paul too, so thank you for your support of our relationship and celebration of our eventual wedding.  Cheers!