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Epic wedding diary, part 1

I’ve been looking forward to writing all about the wedding day, but at the same time put off by the epic nature of doing so. I’ve decided to try writing it as stream-of-consciousness with headings and see if that works.

This post covers only waking up to getting on the coach to the zoo. Too much detail, perhaps? :)

Waking up.

God it’s early – 6.30am, but excitement means we manage to get up by 6.45am as planned. Paul knocks on the spare room door to make sure Martin and Rosy are awake. Feeling oddly normal so far.


We bought croissants especially as we had guests. I’d normally eat two, but nerves plus the early time means I can only stomach one. Having said that, I was convinced I wouldn’t be able to eat anything, so I can’t be as bad as I’d feared.

Getting ready stage 1.

Everyone has showers and puts on slobby clothes as we all need to go out before getting ready proper. So far everything’s going well – the only early mishap was our bed drawer jamming, which made getting Martin a towel rather difficult! Martin goes off to get his hair cut – I take a picture of him pre-haircut to see the before and after. Mum shows up earlier than expected; she got an early train because she was up so early.

The hairdresser.

Paul stays behind as we’re awaiting the delivery of replacement trousers for Martin, so Rosy, mum and I walk to the hairdresser. Martin’s just finishing off there when we arrive – his hair looks a good length, but a bit, erm, big. He later explained she’d put loads of gunk in his hair, which he washed out as soon as he got back! Anyway, I’ve had a trial at the hairdresser so know what to expect. Rosy and mum take occasional photos, while I’m getting worried that Paul still hasn’t arrived, which might mean the trousers still haven’t arrived. Eventually he turns up, and after what seems like forever he tells me that the bloke’s rung up for directions so they’ll arrive imminently. Paul gets his hair trimmed, then goes to pick up the flowers.

Still at the hairdressers.

Paul comes back with the flowers just as my hair’s being finished off. I’m wearing a tiara, we have a box of buttonholes and a bouquet, and it still hasn’t sunk in that anything unusual’s happening! Flowers look a little shabby close-up, but I soon realise this is what all flowers are like and they are lovely really. Paul drives us all home.

Proper getting ready.

Boys use downstairs to dress, while girls get upstairs. Rosy gets ready in the time it takes me to apply my minimalist make-up – less in fact, as she comes through to help me out with it! Mum takes photos and Rosy helps me into my dress. Once the dress is zipped up I suddenly start looking like a bride, but *still* don’t feel like one!

Meeting the boys.

Mark has arrived early to sort out some last-minute slideshow changes, so all three are there when I make my entrance – I think they were suitably complimentary ;) Paul and Martin look lovely (Martin’s hair much improved), and Mark looks unready due to the computer stuff. We take a few photos in our back garden, and Dave arrives just as we finish. I try holding my bouquet to see if the full get up makes me feel like it’s real – it doesn’t work.

Journey to Pat and Dave’s house.

We all load up the cars. I’ve got a really vivid memory here. Paul’s in the loo or summat, and the others are outside. I glance out of the kitchen window, and see Martin on the pavement outside. Martin, in a suit and tie, with a rose buttonhole. It hit me then – this is all actually happening, the wedding is today! I rush outside to tell Rosy and get hugs from her and Martin (I think) and get a little teary. Two minutes later though, my brain back-tracks and it all feels rather unreal again :) Soon we set off: I’m in Dave’s car with Paul and mum. I don’t remember much of the journey, other than getting partway out of the estate when mum mentions sneezing or summat and we realise we don’t have any of Paul’s hayfever medicine! A quick visit home, and then we head off to Pat and Dave’s house.

Pat and Dave’s house.

We arrive and see ‘congratulations’ balloons on the drive. Pat meets us at the door, and gets teary-eyed already! Inside are the Mackays and Emily. I’ve not met the Mackays much, especially Katie and John, and they seem really nice. I’m getting compliments already! I think we open a couple of cards, and then: lunchtime. There is a lovely big spread, but my appetite seems to have gone on holiday so I hardly eat anything. Paul has lots of sausage rolls, of course :) The loveseat is out in the garden, so we commandeer it! Gradually everyone else gets food and join us. Thelma and Jack soon turn up with Paul’s maternal grandparents, Joan and Ernie. Everyone looks very smart and brightly-coloured to boot! Lots of handshakes, hugs and kisses.

Still at the Spellers’.

Paul’s paternal grandparents, Bill and Margaret, arrive, as do the Bienkovs with partners, and briefly a couple of Merrimans, who will meet us at the coach stop. More photos in the garden, such as this group one. I like this photo of me with the piano. Being a bride is fantastic for self-confidence – not only do you get everyone telling you how good you look all day (and how well-organised/clever/great you are!), but there is some sort of undefinable quality that actually makes you look better for the day. Don’t tell me it’s just make-up, a hairdo and a pretty dress :p

Heading for the coach.

Rob Merriman plays a dirty trick by ringing the house, pretending to be the coach driver, and saying it had broken down! Mark answers the phone, and to start with we think that Mark is the one playing the trick, so I’m sorry for being annoyed at him :) We nearly left the camcorder behind – imagine the disaster! At the bus stop we spot Nick Merriman in his gorilla outfit! (well, gorilla hands and head, which made the effect even funnier :D) Sadly, we’re yet to see any photos of him in costume, as he overheated and removed it before getting to the zoo :)

Setting off on the coach.

The driver seems very professional and nice. We managed to do our register and check everyone’s on board, and put on our tape of music. The tape player plays back very slowly, so everything drops a semitone or so and we’re sure not to run out of music :) So, to the strains of Neil Hannon singing National Express even more deeply than usual, the coach pulls away and we sweep through Hextable. To the zoo!