I could totally pull this off.
This past weekend Andy and I were FINALLY invited to an English wedding. Well, we were only invited to the reception which means I am still looking for a reason to wear a fancy hat on my head, but at least I got to see all the other women's hats up close and personal like. You know, to weed out (pun intended) what I liked and what I didn't when it finally came to my moment of glorified hat wearing.
The wedding reception we were invited to was being held by one of Andy's friends from back in California. His friend is British and was working in the States on a work visa until he was downsized from his job. As per the stipulations of his US work visa, he had to leave the US pretty immediately (Andy and I can't remember if it was 10 days or a whole month but it was a fucking short period of time to get your whole life together to move back to the UK). While the whole being kicked out of the country because your employer can't keep you sucks some major ass, it ended up working out for the guy as he reconnected with his university girlfriend, had a beautiful baby girl, and obviously got hitched. Yay him. And yay us, as we got to go to the reception.
The dress...that train was kept out for the entire night. Yes, I may have stepped on it a few times.
Now to clarify, as I had to have Andy do to me that day – the reception in British terms doesn't seem to be the complete same as in American terms. In the States it's not completely uncommon to have a small family-only type wedding ceremony but then have an everyone's invited to the reception type thing. The reception being both a sit down dinner (or buffet) with the drinking and dancing afterward. In British terms it appears to be a 3 part affair – the wedding ceremony, the wedding sit down dinner, then the reception. People who are invited to the ceremony are invited to the sit down dinner. People who are only invited to the reception do not get dinner (though we got some pub grub buffet style late in the evening).
The groom and my groom. Groovy.
The reception was in Burnley, which is a small town about an hour out of Liverpool. If you've never heard of Burnley, that's alright. It's Burnley after all, which meant the next morning I was very content staying in bed for an extra couple hours because I was in no rush to get up and explore Burnley. The actual reception was in one of those old stone, not quite a castle, hotel type places with high ceilings and furniture from your great grandfather's time. They did have a very gorgeous atrium which screams of the England of my imagination and I spent a lot of time in there drinking cider. Bulmers No17 if I'm to be specific, and the 80 year old bartender corrected me every time I ordered it. “It's not 'balm-ers', it's 'bull-mers'.”
I love me a nice atrium. It's like being in nature but with less bugs.
Andy gets very poetic around nature. Which is why we try to keep him out of it.
Nature just makes me giggle. No wait, that's the cider.
Obviously we didn't bring Henry with us because we didn't feel like being responsible that evening. As it was, 80% of the people we talked to either had kids there or had kids sleeping in the hotel room upstairs with their nans. It also happens that these kids all seemed to be around Henry's age so even though he wasn't there, he was talked about quite a bit. Parents of small children don't have much in the way of lives so we talk about our kid's lives instead. I basically came away that evening knowing that there isn't a kid in the history of the world that sleeps properly and I kind of feel better about it now.
I hid behind Andy because my dress showed off too much of my tits. No really, it did.
That was a big part of the evening. Andy and I actually got to talk to people. Oh sure, it was mostly about our kids but we were talking. And what I found peculiar is that it appears in a social environment like a wedding, English people are more than happy to give you their name! Hurray! Not that I remembered any of the names, I was drinking cider, remember?
About the time things got really REALLY fun.
The best bit of the whole evening though came towards the end when this drunken women stumbled outside where we were all smoking cigarettes in the rain. “Oh hey!” she said to Andy and me, “You're the Scouser and the American, right?” I don't know why but I LOVED that. The Scouser and the American....that's totally a movie title right there.
Anyhow, we ended the evening shortly after midnight after the hotel bar closed down.
“We'll take a pint of Carling and a Strawberry Balm-ers please.”
“We aren't serving anymore.”
“Andy! Hey Andy! I think it's time we head back to the hotel.”
“They aren't serving anymore.”
“You know, you're right. We should probably head back. We have a bottle of wine there, right?”
“Absolutely. And egg mayo sandwiches!”
Best wishes to you both.
I didn't get to wear feathers, flowers, or a live kookaburra on my head, but it was still a really great night.