I am old enough to remember the last major British Royal Wedding, in 1981, and the hoo-hah and anticipation which surrounded it. I remember getting up early, watching all the build-up on TV, the ceremony itself, and then going to the party in our village. The atmosphere was very exciting for a teenager and it made a huge impression on me.
So I’m slightly sad to be missing out on William and Kate’s big day celebrations back home in the UK tomorrow. My parents’ village will be holding another street party, with traditional games – an English feria, I suppose, sort of. The next best thing, as a British expat living in a city in Spain with a healthy community of fellow royal-watchers, is a Royal Wedding party.
Tomorrow morning, I will be convening with a group of English ladies in an Irish pub in Seville, decorated with Wills’n’Kate Union Jack bunting, purchased expressly for this memorable occasion at Morrisons in Gibraltar. There, we will watch the procession as it makes its way to Westminster Abbey, the service, the return to Buckingham Palace, and, of course, The Kiss on The Balcony.
We will pass judgement on The Dress (too classic? too modern? too simple? too frou-frou? or just right?). We will look out for sartorial highs and lows (especially the controversial Middleton-beloved “fascinators”) - ones to watch: Victoria Beckham, Queen Rania of Jordan, Princess Letizia, Vogue editor Alexandra Shulman, the York sisters; we will watch the bridesmaids for entertaining boredom-provoked naughtiness; we will listen to the banal TV commentary; we will toast the new couple’s long and happy marriage (and incidental saving of the British monarchy); we will cut a wedding cake; and we will get a little merry and rowdy, to the astonishment of locals and tourists alike.
What will you be doing? Will you watch the wedding on TV like me, and the estimated global audience of two billion? Or are you not remotely bothered or interested, which is fair enough too?