Royal Wedding week: the Royal Wedding

Your Royal Correspondent here, reporting from my living room. Originally I was in the third row at Westminster Abbey (thanks to my home-printed “Little Moi” press credentials). But I was unceremoniously booted out when the Archbishop of Canterbury spotted me updating my Twitter feed from an iPhone hidden in my hat. So it’s back to the sofa for me.

This means my reportage will include running commentary from the guys in my family.

The royal whirl has been exhausting for a Californian-Oklahoman who doesn’t curtsy and who thinks “classic national music” means Motown. But here’s a summary of the morning’s highlights, as seen from my house.

To start with a random observation: Most of the royals rode to the church in a procession of minibuses. They looked like schoolkids going on a field trip.

Then, my husband and son couldn’t decide whether William and Harry were driving to the church in a Rolls or a Bentley. It went like this: Rolls. Bentley. No, Rolls… no — Bentley! Me: to be fully patriotic, they should have put a Rolls Royce jet engine on the back of the car. That would get them to the church on time. (Bentley? Bentley.)

IF

(Photo: my son the Eagle Scout, trying to look like a Brit.)

The Queen then appeared, wearing yellow. My son: “She could have made a lot of money off the bookies if she’d bet on that.”

And at last, Kate Middleton emerged from her hotel and climbed into a Jaguar for the drive to the church. I shouted, “Bride! Bride!” Proving yet again that I am six years old at heart. And an incurable throwback.

The service:

The music was glorious. Now, I’m the daughter of a church organist, so choirs, trumpets, and processionals always choke me up. This morning was no exception. And as the first hymn finished echoing down the nave of Westminster Abbey, and the Archbishop stood before the bride and groom, my son said: “Mawwiage. Mawwiage!”

But as Rowan Williams went on to speak, in deep velvet tones, my son changed his tune. “How do you get a voice like that?” he said. “He gives Morgan Freeman a run for his money.”

Then it was vows, readings, and more music. As the cameras panned the guests singing classic, traditional Anglican hymns, the Husband spotted the Beckhams. He pointed. “Posh is lip synching.”

By this point, however, the choir was singing “Jerusalem.” That hymn always brings this Yank to tears. (“Bring me my bow of burning gold, bring me my arrows of desire! Bring me my spear — O clouds unfold! Bring me my chariot of fire!” God, I’m crying as I type this.)

In sum: the bride looked radiant. The groom looked dashing. As did the best man — Harry wore spurs with his uniform. They completed him. I just hope he didn’t pick them up at last night’s bachelor party. Everything looked sleek, nothing more so than the Hurricane and Spitfire fighters that overflew Buckingham Palace before William and Kate gave the throngs the kiss they’d been waiting for.

Now the couple and their guests have gone back inside for wedding cake, line dancing, and a wicked game of Twister. And your royal correspondent is going to sign off. Thanks – it’s been fun.

IF

(Photo: your correspondent. Adieu, cheries! That’s all, folks! )

(Cross-posted by Penguin.com at The Author’s Desk.)

28 responses to “Royal Wedding week: the Royal Wedding

  1. Thanks Meg. I thought it was all so lovely. I thought her dress was elegant and perfect. The vibes of this one felt right.

    And don’t feel dorky, I had tears too. The energy was wonderful.

  2. Sigh. It’s all lovely and fun. And you got so close to the Queen yesterday! First time I’ve seen her in a t-shirt! Thanks for the front-row seat, Meg! Sorry you got the boot from W. Abbey.

  3. Kudos & props, your coverage was way more my style, and heads above the rest!
    The anally inane/insane analytical analysis and instant replays are starting to grind (and just where is the slow mo footage by the way), but thankfully it’s a slow news day…well, evidently.
    I have to admit, I’m a bit surprised that I enjoyed as much as I did, but then I was a big fan of Di’s, and so….
    Great choir, and just the right amount of pomp and circumstance complete with world class horse flesh…and a prince in spurs too?
    Gee whiz, it just doesn’t get much better than that!

    Oh, um, you really should mulch that tree 😉 .

  4. What fun! Thanks, Meg. This was a blast!

  5. Excellent coverage, Meg. Nice work.

    As I was out fetching the morning newspaper at the end of the drive, I noticed my neighbor’s daughter, Felicia, heading (much slower than usual) to the school bus stop. I felt the need to ask her where the usual spring in her step had gone. She explained, with half-lidded eyes, that “mom and auntie had been up all night watching the wedding.” I then asked her what she thought of the royal event. Her response: “Meh.”

    Couldn’t have said it better myself.

    However, after catching some of the coverage this morning, the newlyweds do look very happy and I wish them only the best.

  6. Hi All,

    The Husband here with a few thoughts.

    After the kiss and the fly by I went for my run. It was awesome. Not the run. The sight of families pouring out of their houses and firing up the bar-b-ques, old and young, extended families together and neighbors enjoying a beautiful day. Everyone offering greetings, food and champagne. Outdoor block parties everywhere! When I got back, Meg and I watched the commentators trying to describe the feeling here. Let me offer my description. It’s a blend of family and British patriotism – it’s the like the best of Thanksgiving and the 4th of July. The very best of both.

  7. Excellent coverage. Did the boys debate about the make and model of the car Will & Kate drove off in? BTW – the short buses seen in the procession are known in the US as party buses. It’s for those who want to drink and not drive. Ask that enthusiastic Eagle Scout of yours. Very responsible of the monarchy.

    One question – why does the first letter of Catherine’s name change when she is called Kate?

  8. I have to echo the Husband’s sentiments. And honestly, if I weren’t here, I wouldn’t have gotten revved up for all this. If I’d been in California, this wedding wouldn’t have been a big deal. Or a deal at all.

    But being in Britain for this event has made me feel a part of a national celebration.

    Since I couldn’t be in New York last night for the Edgars, I’m glad I was here.

  9. Angela: Very responsible of the monarchy indeed. I can only presume the partying started at the palace in the morning and will continue all night long.

    And the guys didn’t debate the make of the convertible sports car, because newscasters immediately identified it as an Aston Martin. At which point the Husband threw himself at the TV screen, saying, “I want that car!”

    As for changing C to K, I can only guess it’s because Kate is the standard nickname. Have you ever heard of a Cate, aside from Ms. Blanchett? Or a Cait?

  10. Susan Schweitzer

    Bravo! Your coverage was the best by far.

  11. I live in a house with a Charles, a William, and two corgis (this is all coincidence) so clearly we were up early. We watched on BBC America, which had the same feed as BBC. A much better way to watch, I think there was less pointless commentary than on the American channels. I wasn’t going to watch it live but wife got up early, I couldn’t go back to sleep, and well it is a moment in history. And yes, good job by the Archbishop.
    The music was beautifully done and I wish the couple every happiness.
    Did the men at the house have any thoughts on Pippa Middleton?

    • Or any comment about the doorknocker on Princess Eugenie or Beatrice’s head? (Which is which?) For the record, I love hats, but that thing was so ugly and her smudged crack-whore make-up fell short of the smokey eye affect she was going for.

      I loved watching this and I could feel the pride and camaraderie among the people. It was really positive energy and I enjoyed it very much.

  12. I loved The Husband’s description of the national fellowship that the event sparked. While I didn’t catch ‘wedding fever’ as many of my friends and neighbors did, I love the idea of the blend of family togetherness and patriotism that The Husband conveyed.

    I’m a little overwhelmed by the amount of coverage the event was given here in the states. As an early riser and borderline news junkie, I couldn’t find a news outlet on TV this morning that was reporting anything BUT the wedding.

    One more thing: (somewhat off-topic) I’m a (not very talented) amateur nature photographer and a camera gear nut. I saw an article on the web today about what the Reuters photographers were doing in preparation for shooting the Royal Wedding. The amount of gear the the photographers were carrying is staggering. Here’s the link to the article:

    http://blogs.reuters.com/photo/2011/04/28/final-preparations-for-the-big-day/

  13. Jeff: Thanks for the Abbott’s view of events at the Abbey. Regarding Pippa Middleton, the Husband says, quote: “Hot! Great gal. I’m sure Harry did not regret getting to spend the day with her.” My son is out on a date, so if he has opinions on Miss Middleton, he’s not about to interrupt it to tell me.

    Dana Jean: This is the best comment on Princess Beatrice’s hat. http://twitpic.com/4qxfbz

    • That is funny stuff, haoheohaoehaoheoahea!

    • Bwahahahaha! At least it covers the face and spares the embarrassment! On another note, I will show my Yankee ignorance and ask: when the couple were seated at the altar during the homily/sermon, I would have sworn that I saw seated nearby, what looked like a couple of nuns. Are there Anglican nuns? If so, I guess I learned something today!

      • Monita: Those were indeed Anglican nuns. We also have nuns in the Episcopal Church here in the US, the American branch of the Anglican Communion.

  14. re the coverage: one commentator said today that the global audience for the royal wedding = audience for 20 Super Bowls.

    I found it amusing Pippa, for a while, eclipsed William and Kate as a Twitter trending topic. She made an impact.

  15. Meg, I love your son! “Mawwiage. Mawwiage!” Has to make a mom proud!

  16. Great summary, Meg.
    BTW, I’m just recovering from one of our very British street parties.

  17. Monita: Yes, those were Anglican nuns. And yes, I’m proud that all my children can quote extensively from The Princess Bride.

    DJ: Two aspirin and a full English breakfast?

  18. If it hadn’t been for your (oh-so-entertaining) reporting, I would have missed it all. My eldest son spent the day (& night) of the 29th celebrating his seventeenth birthday. For some reason a whole swag of teen-aged Kiwi boys and girls just didn’t want to have a bar of The Wedding of the Year. And I was too busy with supplying food, a taxi service and childcare for my other bairns to sneak off to the tele for a peek.
    So… thank you, Meg and The Family! I’ve enjoyed this very much.

  19. I was at work all day so missed the celebrations which doesn’t bother me in the least. However, I am reliably informed by my wife & son that the Hurricanes & Spitfires flew over our house on the way back to base which I would have loved to have seen.

  20. A bit late to the party here, but William was also wearing spurs.

  21. Thanks, Meg. I feel sooooooooooooooooooooooo out of it. Having spent the wee hours of the Big Day in
    a) a house with no TV or internet and
    b) in a region of rural Ontario that suffered power outages ALL DAY anyway, I missed the lot, except for some highlights that evening at my brother’s house.
    However, I’m now back home, and have taped it ALL on an 8-hour video, so I will catch it all eventually, a little belatedly. Not the same, I know.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s