Friday, 29 April 2011

Wedding Day

Given the big event today, I thought it appropriate to post about the marriage of Princess Alice and Prince Harry, also styled H.R.H. Duke of Gloucester.  I say that as I have just paid a £1.54 library fine and have renewed the ticket to keep it for another few weeks. 

There are more magical places she talks about after boarding school, and I hope to come back to those.  For a while she went off to Kenya She said that suitors tended to ‘expect a lot’ and she didn’t like how pushy some of them were.    Not only that, but it does sound as though she knew Prince Harry for most of her life and that there was very much a sort of  understanding between them, but she went to Kenya to enjoy the last of an entirely private life before marriage.  It won't just have been about being married, but about how becoming part of the royal family would change her life.  For example, I was reading that this would be the last Christmas that Kate would be able to spend with her own family.  Imagine never being able to make that choice again.

Their wedding took place on 6 November 1935 at 11.30 am.  Her dress, by Hartnell, was described in The Sketch as being “in deep ivory, with a wonderful pink pearl tinge.”

Bill and I are invited to a 'Wedding Tea' at his cousin Michael’s.  Cousin Kathleen and her husband Bobby will also be there.  Bill reckons this is the doing of Michael’s partner, Christine more than Mike’s; guys don’t get that excited about royal weddings, do they?  We’re requested to bring ‘buns’.  

After 15 years over here I still get into trouble with the terms ‘tea’ and ‘buns’.  My natural inclination would be that we were being invited to have a warm milky beverage and were asked to bring something like a small puffy bread loaf that one could split open and deposit a hamburger patty into (they don’t do ‘hamburger’ here either…too German, you know).

I’ve finally learned that ‘tea time’ up here in the North generally means somewhere between 3.30 and 5 pm, ‘Tea’ is a meal that might include pork pies or it might just be a piece of cake.  ‘Buns’ means what I would probably call a cupcake, which Bill is baking just now as I type, only I think he’s making another carrot cake, this time including the cream cheese and butter icing.   He does a mean carrot cake, but my stomach doesn't tolerate sweet stuff well, so I'll be approaching that carefully.

I’m looking forward to watching the wedding on TV, or at least parts of it.  The big thing will be Her Dress; after that I’m not too fussed.  I’m reading about people in the US getting up at 4 am to see the spectacle; can’t say I would do the same even here, in spite of the fact that it is a holiday and I’m retired and wouldn’t have to go to work after.  I’d settle for re-runs, me.

I wish them both - Kate and Will - luck.  I think marriage can be tough enough without being royalty.  A person is nervous enough on their wedding day without having the entire world watch you do it!  I’m curious to see if there will be commercials inserted in the coverage here in the UK.  My guess is not, but I’ll let you know.


Rick Stone said...

I've seen several friends on Facebook posting about setting their alarms and getting up to watch the wedding. Can't understand the interest myself. Didn't this country have a war in the late 1700's to separate us from all that? Anyway, coverage in Oklahoma started at 3:30am. I was still in slumberland at that hour. Actually, am really tired of the whole mess. That is all we are getting on network TV here even though an outbreak of tornados in Mississippi and Alabama just killed 300 people and left devastation for hundreds of miles. (It was reported over 100 twisters in just one day, over 700 have hit this country so far this year and the real "tornado season" does not start until May. Anyway, glad the wedding is done and people can get on with their own lives.

BigLittleWolf said...

You have such a lovely blog. (I need to stop by - for tea (?) - more often.)

I can't say that I rose at 4 a.m., but waking at 5:30 (earlier than usual) I was able to thoroughly enjoy several hours before my writing-and-mothering duty kicked in.

Having seen Diana and Charles 30 years ago, I couldn't help but feel all kinds of emotions (like many around the half century mark) - including the passage of my own youth and innocence, my two sons and having raised them solo, and simply the pleasure of the elegance in the Sarah Burton (for McQueen) dress - so reminiscent of Grace Kelly.

It was a lovely (albeit bittersweet) few hours, and while I hold no particular affection for the premise of fairy tales in our real world, I do, like most of us, like to believe that people can share a good life together if they choose well, and perhaps, get more than a little lucky.

Wishing the happy couple all the best... can't be easy being royal...

Terri said...

We watched network tv for three hours this morning without a single advertisement, but we did get a bit sleepy between the ceremony and the kisses.

Shelley said...

Rick -
I was right, there were no commercial breaks at all throughout the day until about 1.30 when the news cam on - and it was about Alabama. And even then the commercials on BBC One may just have been about BBC One, I'm not sure.

I don't think for most Americans the wedding was of any political significance - it was more a Cinderella story like we were all told as children. I loved the different views of Westminister, HER DRESS of course!, the neat cars, remembering running down the Mall during the London Marathons I've done, watching famous people looking vaguely nervous and trying to remember who was related to whom and how. Time enough is spent on tornadoes and taxes (almost done) and it was lovely to have a whole day off to see something pretty for a change.

BigLittleWolf - Pleased you dropped by. I didn't watch Charles and Di get hitched so perhaps that is why I didn't really worry about the fact that she wasn't there. I remember the day she died just like I remember when JFK and John Lennon were killed, but I didn't really associate the day with Diana. I like the fact that Wiliam obviously still honours his mom, but I think Kate would do better not to emulate her: that marriage ended in divorce and then she was killed. I'm sure that Diana's tragic story is behind many radical changes in how the monarchy operate, including the fact that William was 'allowed' to marry a commoner. Everyone here is pleased about his choice, but make no mistake about it, she is - or was - a commoner and it's just not the done thing. All the more reason why it is such a Cinderella story, though a millionaire's daughter, not an orphan of course.

The English Organizer said...

I agree, marriage can be a tough thing, even without every camera lens in the world looking at you.
I hope your "buns" were a big success!!

Shelley said...

Pauline -

BILL'S BUNs were a great success - Cousin Kathleen asked for the William Sonoma recipe. Kathleen's husband Bobby's world was shattered by the idea that a man could have baked a cake... poor man.

Dumbwit Tellher said...

Hi Shelley ~ I loved your post. I'm a big sucker for a royal wedding and royal history. My husband & I were those silly people up @ 4 a.m. to watch the wedding live. It very fun to read your impressions of living life in the U.K. My husband and I have our home here in TX for sale and our next move is to Aberdeen, Scotland. I can't imagine all the mistakes I'll make living there?! The royal wedding was such fun and a real uplifting moment for so many of us.

Here's to a life of love to Catherine and William!

Cheers ~ Deb

The Daily Connoisseur said...

Shelley How delightful. I'm so glad you directed me to your All Things Interwar section of your blog... I, like you, am almost obsessed with the time period! I just received my Agatha Christie Hour DVDs in the post yesterday and can't wait to watch them. xx