Eight Days To Go … Eight Days A Week???
On Saturday 26th of May, at St Michaels Church in Mickleham, the Wedding of the Decade will take place.
I find myself completely serene about the prospect of marriage to Lady P, knowing her and loving her as I do. I am also relaxed about the Church ceremony, atheist as I am. St Michaels is Lady P’s church – christened there, her father buried in the churchyard, and her mother a regular in the congregation. David, the local vicar has been a great support in every sense. The service will be pretty traditional, as that is what we both feel comfortable with – “Dear Lord and Father of Mankind” and “Immortal, Invisible” – its funny, but it is the older hymns that still resonate. The modern ones just don’t seem to grab you. Sadly, my two favourites – “Jerusalem” and “He Who Would Valiant Be” were rejected due to being too public schoolish, and we lost “Guide Me O! Thou Great Redeemer” due to space.
If truth be told, I would be happy to be married anywhere, and my darling’s church, in the site of her God, is fitting, and, to me, less embarrassing that most other settings and ceremonies. And Mrs D, the Mother of The Bride has been incredibly welcoming. I suppose that all those Scout Church Parades helped – at least I know when to stand up and when to sit down. In a moment of spiritual generosity, Mrs D asked me if I would like to take a blessing on the occasion of our first Banns – although we have never discussed it, she knows that I have no faith, yet it would have been terrible to refuse, and in her way, she was offering me something beyond words. Like the Communists in “The Small World of Don Camillo”, I accepted – it can’t hurt, can it? And I would never take sacrament, that would be insulting.
In front of our families and friends we will publicly declare our mutual love and respect, our trust and hope for the future. I am a very lucky man – this was the result of a chance encounter, and with our hugely different backgrounds, this may never have happened at all. Luckily, a shared love of Simon & Garfunkel on the way home led to the biggest adventure of our lives.