Bliss on the Beach

updated 03/06/1995 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 03/06/1995 AT 01:00 AM EST

IT WAS A MARRIAGE OF LIKE MINDS, or at least a meeting of high-maintenance bodies. The bride, Pamela Anderson, 27—former Home Improvement Tool Girl, now the mystic, crystally inclined C.J. on Baywatch—wore a white bikini (hey, it was her first wedding), offset by sunglasses, a turquoise scarf around her waist and a mass of blond hair. Groom Tommy Lee, 32, drummer for the heavy metal outfit Mötley Crüe—and the former Mr. Heather Locklear—wore a pair of beige knee-length cut-offs, which nicely offset his numerous tattoos. Neither the newly-weds nor any of the eight guests at the impromptu Feb. 19 wedding on the beach in Cancún, Mexico, wore shoes.

"The wedding was very informal, very spontaneous," says one of the witnesses, Marcos Corminas, 25, manager of Tequila Rock, a club where the couple had hung out the few nights before. Anderson, who was in Mexico on a photo shoot, would join Lee after work, and the two would sip Cristal champagne, attend cultural events like the Friday Night String Bikini Contest and watch other people dance till dawn. Then one night, says Corminas, Lee "just proposed! He just said, 'I want to marry you!' " As in, the next day. After all, they had been dating for at least a week.

Mere hours later, the couple drove to the local hospital to get blood tests and arranged for a judge to unite them at 8:30 a.m. the next day. All went off as in a storybook, except for the fact that they slept until 2:30 p.m. By late afternoon, though, they had arrived on the beach. They filled out the prenuptial forms on chaise longues. They parked their plastic foam cups in the sand. After a Mexican civil ceremony, the two whispered to each other and Lee lifted his bride, carried her to the water's edge and tossed her into the Caribbean. "I don't know if they were in love with each other," Cominas says, "but they really liked each other a lot and were having a lot of fun."

Fun was not the operative word for Anderson's parents, Barry, a furnace repairman, and Carol, a waitress, back on Vancouver Island, B.C., who got the news over the phone. (Pamela, clad in a black Harley Davidson T-shirt and feasting on lobster, called from her $l,500-a-night honeymoon suite.) "I thought she was joking," says Carol Anderson. "It is heartbreaking and shocking. This was the first I'd heard of him. And she's always been interested in my opinion of people she's dating. It hurt we weren't there. This is not a happy household right now."

Lee does have qualities that suggest the quintessential son-in-law. The Greek-born, L.A.-bred rocker may be revered for his contributions to the world of heavy metal, but he is better known for his stage antics (pulling down his pants) and his disturbing offstage conduct. (He was arrested in November 1993 for possession of a semiautomatic weapon.) In August 1993, after almost eight years of marriage, second wife Locklear decided she had had her fill. This past December, four days after Locklear married rocker Richie Sambora, Lee was arrested for injuring his live-in fiancée, model—and Anderson lookalike—Bobbi Brown. (No charges were filed.)

Anderson has also had her distressing (and numerically challenging) love troubles. A sampling of previous beaux include Scott Baio (to whom she was briefly engaged in 1993), Baywatch co-star David Charvet, TV Superman Dean Cain, MTV veejay Eric Nies, Australian-born surfer Kelly Slater and Sylvester Stallone.

Anderson recently told Britain's daily Sun that she had "dated 19 guys in my life. Of those, I have made love to 15." But those totals were in flux, it seems, practically until the moment her wedding guests rented Yamaha Wave Runners and began zipping around the breakers in celebration. Columnist Liz Smith reported that movie producer Jon Peters was "slightly stunned" by the news that Anderson, whom he had dated as recently as early February, had gotten married.

The mother of the bride, stunned more than slightly, believes her daughter will make the most of her couple-hood. "She's a smart girl who's worked hard," Carol Anderson says. "We trust her instincts and hope she's happy."

BETSY ISRAEL
JOSEPH HARMES in Cancun, TOM CUNNEEF and KIMBERLY CHRISMAN in Los Angeles

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