Monday, 10 June 2013

Wedding Day - Part 3 (from the Bride)

Driving off from the church, we wave to everybody, including the punters in the pub across the road. The bridesmaids are happily chatting away as Alan and I enjoy the moment. Halfway back to Fanhams Hall, we pull over to let the photographer shoot past us so he can get back before us.

There is champagne to greet us when we arrive, and some photos before we say goodbye to the car and the lovely driver - I have rarely met anyone better suited to their job, he was so calm and professional.

We locate the drinks reception and direct guests in the right direction. A short amount of time in which to catch up with guests and sample canapes before rounding up bridesmaids, ushers and family members for photos. We go off to have some couple shots round the grounds, and then just as it looks like rain, we head back to the shelter of the building for the wedding breakfast. Alan has fun trying to do up the fastenings on the back of my dress's train, as do a number of other people. It seems a lot more complicated than it looked in the shop...

There is momentary confusion when someone points out that a substantial number of our guests aren't yet seated. We are missing Alan's parents. Eventually we realise that noone has called in any guests from the library - they are retrieved by an usher and the problem is solved.

It is only now, when we are about to go in and give our speech, that I remember that I never had any lunch. It is now nearly 5pm. I am almost dizzy with hunger - but am quickly distracted by all the excitement going on around me.

Everyone gets to their feet as we enter, welcoming us as the Bride and Groom. It's a little overwhelming knowing that everyone is clapping and smiling because of us.

We're doing the speeches first, so Alan and I launch straight into our joint offering. It won't set the world alight, but we thank all the right people and it's a lovely feeling standing up next to my new husband and addressing our guests together - I highly recommend doing this.

Colin, Alan's brother and best man, gives a much better speech - nothing too embarrassing luckily - and then it's time for food. I feel full just looking at my main course but I'm damned if I'm not going to eat it as it's so delicious. Ditto dessert.

Between courses we have plenty of time to circulate the tables and say hello to everyone. We decided not to have a traditional top table, mainly because the numbers didn't really work. On our table we have our brothers and their partners, and my MOH and her partner. Our parents have their own tables with respective family members, with our parents being seated as close to us as possible. This seems to work as everyone can relax with people they know well already, and everyone seems happy.

It rains during the meal, proper summery downpours. We don't care. I don't think most people even really noticed. It's the only time it really rains all day. While I'm relieved, part of me is actually a little disappointed we didn't get to use the pretty blue heart-shaped umbrella we have.

Dessert is over and everyone trickles out of the room so it can be turned round for the evening party. The sun comes out, so we scoot outside to have some more photographs. Alan and I then sneak upstairs for a little while - simply to have some space to reflect on everything that's gone before. The day has run pretty much like clockwork, everyone has been fed and watered and we can relax - time for cake and party!

Groom, Best Man and Usher socks!

If they can have sock shots...


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