A few more drinks and the children were called for dinner, they were eating in the dining room next to the bar accompanied by my beautiful niece and her best friend. I was relieved as my daughter was becoming unbearable through starvation. A short time later and we were called to dinner, each person accompanied to there seat. The meal was sensational, I have never enjoyed a meal at a wedding as much as I enjoyed this one, I later discovered the meal was £37 a head. What! Vegetable soup, followed by a sorbet to cleanse the pallet, which sent our men into turmoil, we do not have the most classy family and I think their immediate thoughts were 'have we missed the meal?' I opted for chicken, which was stuffed, wrapped in bacon, with an array of seasonal vegetables, an amazing sauce and boiled and roast potatoes, delicious. To top the meal off raspberry cheesecake.
The children were then brought back to join us for the speeches, they sat all the way up one side of the hall on window seats. The bride not wanting to put pressure on her father, who has the on-set of dementia had asked her brothers to do a speech on his behalf, they carried it off very well. They of course started off with the English - Scottish language barrier and confirmed they had the groom watching Eastenders to pick up the London lingo and that they had been watching Take the High Road, given that Take the High Road has not been on TV for a long while their joke was slightly wasted and perhaps River City would have received a bigger laugh, but they pulled it back quickly when they said the reason for them doing the speech was due to their dad being Irish (which is true) so nobody would understand him. Speeched out of the way and we headed to the Drawing Room for tea and coffee, while the staff cleared the dinning room.
By this time it was nearing 8.30 and I was keen for the dancing to begin to liven us all up as we were beginning to wilt, but it was not yet time for the dancing, it was time for a Celtic Blessing and guess where it was, yes it was back to the great hall, I decided I couldn't face the cold, so I stayed warm and cosy in the Drawing Room with some of the younger children. They returned some 30 minutes later and it was out to the terrace for fireworks. My son, who only had his Gilly shirt on, came back from the Great Hall frozen, luckily I had been wise enough to bring his jacket for the journey home. We watched the fireworks which seemed to go on forever and finally they stopped and the first waltz was to begin. It was 10.15 pm, I was ready for my bed!
The hall was long and narrow with only perhaps 7 or 8 tables set up with 8 to a table, there were approx 80 guests + children and no where near enough seats, the dance floor was mainly taken up with the band and after the initial waltz the band started with the Gay Gordon. My husband and I took to the floor and I think we did the Gay Gordon on the one spot the whole way through. My daughter danced a bit with her cousins and then decided she was too cold and she too got her coat on and went to play for a bit. She returned to my side at 11pm with a sore head, so her and I retired to the Drawing Room where 2 of my sister-in-laws were, she lay her head on my knee and within 15 minutes was asleep, happily sucking away on her thumb with her silky ribbon, taken from one of the favours, oblivious to those around her. We were then joined by my son, who sat wide eyed listening to all the gossip from his Aunties.
The bus came promptly at 12.30, for which I was eternally grateful. A bus full of drink fuelled people and of course the usual sing song starts, it was great, more fun, laughter and enjoyment on the way home than there had been for most of the evening.
I may sound ungrateful and I suppose in a way I was. When the wedding had first been spoken about, the bride, who had said she would never remarry had confirmed it was to be a child friendly, informal wedding. I was lulled into a false sense of security, it was very grand and I'm sure it spiralled out of control the way most weddings do, my husband doesn't come from a grand family and I mean no disrespect when I say that. They are not a couple who have an abundance of money, they have not won the lottery and they have 4 children. To me it seems such a lot of money, thousands of pounds they spent on a grand day, just one day. They could have had a simple, just as meaningful day, one marriage ceremony, no fireworks and a party at night, followed by a holiday for all 6 of them. Instead they are having Barcelona for 4 days with the gift money they received for the 2 of them.
Each to their own I suppose.