‘Bunting’ was to me back then a colorful bird species

I was living in England at the time of that ‘other’ royal wedding. You know, the one that really brought the crowds out with more enthusiasm than the one that takes place (I think, though I haven’t been paying much attention) this week.

The wedding I was in place for was the Charles and Diana Spencer one. The wondrous and beauteous and winsome Diana captured the imagination of many, especially many of the red-blooded male sorts, of which I could still claim to be one at that time. I fell madly in crush with her and was gobsmacked by her silly untimely death.

But, Charles and Di it was then. Ultimately, as we know, that grand relationship turned into ‘Upchuck and Die’, as a comic said about the couple during their subsequent domestic histrionics that led to the Queen developing a case of Annus Horribilis. Oh, and the comic made the comment prior to Diana’s demise, so it wasn’t in terrible taste.

Dear Daphne, my landlady of the time, came over to our bungalow on Green Lane one morning near the wedding date and asked if I was going to put up any ‘bunting’ to mark the grand occasion. I was perplexed. As a damn colonial I didn’t know from bunting. Anyway turned out that people up and down Green Lane were hanging out commemorative items of royal and patriotic symbolism like Union Jacks etc. because they were so thrilled by the wedding. Well, I didn’t have much in the way of bunting at my disposal. But, I did have a supermarket plastic grocery bag that was Union Jack festooned (for the occasion as well) so I hung that from the porch light. Worked for me.

We didn’t have a street party on Green Lane on the wedding day. But other streets in the area did host such festive gatherings. And that was fun. Wandering about drinking too much beer and delighting in the antics (especially) of young females who had also consumed too much been and began to fret about the absence of loos in the vicinity. I loved it all. It gave me a slice of English life the average tourist doesn’t get to take part in. But I, as a temporary resident, could.

This time around, however, there isn’t quite the enthusiasm that the wedding of Will’s Pa and Ma evoked. And, Will, it was really all about your Ma. Charles was already kind of a pill and proved to be a greater one was time went by. Of course none of us knew back then about the (shudder) Camilla factor. What, Chuck, are you nuts? Oh well, it’s not all about the splendid esthetics, is it? I’ve found that out in my life, too.

Personally, I think if I were Will and Kate, I would’ve just eloped and then moved into a trailer park quietly.

Oh, and speaking of trailer parks, there is something of a deal being made of the fact that Kate is ‘common’. Well, as one columnist said, if Kate is common, then why is she marrying ‘down’? Let’s face it, the Royals (with the exception of the Queen) don’t have a hell of a lot to recommend them in terms of sterling behavior throughout their history.

Anyway, for us North Americans, ‘common’ in Kate’s sense doesn’t mean she snaps her gum or breaks wind in public, it just means she’s not of Royal or aristocratic lineage. Diana, you see, had aristocratic claims regardless of some of the low-lifes she chose to hang out with near the end of her days.

Kate comes from a good and solid bourgeois family and it is a family that has more pounds at its disposal than any of use could ever imagine possessing. So, not exactly common as dirt, is she.

Anyway, I wish the kids well – especially Kate in her lovely hats. Kate, me darlin’, you have taken on a tall order and I do hope you’re up for it. It isn’t going to be easy. But, make allowances for the lot you’re marrying into. There’s a lot of ‘stuff’ to deal with there, and you aren’t allowed to have an opinion about it all.

Just ask auntie-in-law, Fergie, or erstwhile great uncle Tony Snowdon.

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9 responses to “‘Bunting’ was to me back then a colorful bird species

  1. I remember my mother rousing my sister and I at 1 a.m. to watch Charles and Di’s wedding, and curling up on the basement floor in a blanket to view the nuptials. Mayhaps this time I will only be returning home at 1 a.m. from a function when the wedding starts, but I do intend to watch it.
    And can you tell me, fair scribe, why the hell those teeny hats are called ‘fascinators’?

  2. I missed the first one and I sure as hell will miss this one. Why people get excited about royals marrying is beyond me…

    What have any of these people done that I should be impressed by them?

  3. I think it’s just like celebrities: some of us ordinaries like to hear the salacious details about their excess. But they have not done a thing to have earned anyone’s impressability, Jazz. You’re absolutely right.
    I wonder if people are hoping that “Wills and Kate” get it right this time, and erase a little bit of that ‘anus horribilis’?
    I just want to see Westminster Abbey all duded up.

  4. I’m kind of excited about it actually. It’s so traditional, so yesteryear that it seems perfectly reasonable.

    I wish them the best.

    Pearl

  5. It’s the pomp and circumstance of it all – this time. These are the kids, not “my” generation’s royals. I found Diana absolutely fascinating – Fergie too. Will and Harry? Meh. Still, I’ll likely be watching the wedding. I just don’t subscribe to “Majesty” magazine any more.

  6. Pinklea: I had ‘colorful’ fantasies about Diana for years, though I suspect she didn’t have any about me. Sigh, unrequited. But, I am with you. I find them ‘young’ and remarkably boring.
    Susie: Why are they called ‘fascinators’? I have no idea. I just read a think in the G&M about them, but they didn’t ‘splain’ the name. Is it because they’re fascinating? If so, they are about the only thing about rather pedestrian Miss Kate that might be deemed fascinating.
    Jazz: I’m with you all the way on this one.

  7. Pearl: I often find it interesting that Americans are regularly more interested in the royals than are Canadians. I thought you had a revolution to shed your ties with that mangy lot.

  8. Being far away enough to avoid the lynching party I can say that the Diana magic never took on me.
    The first ‘sun through the skirt’ photo was enough….any girl’s headmistress would have made her aware much earlier in life that you don’t stand against the sun in a flimsy skirt to be photographed.
    She was indeed the typists’ delight…they saw themselves in her…thick as two short planks, manipulative…and getting the goodies.

    Why anyone would marry into the royal family is beyond me…if you’re of normal height it must be like being surrounded by the seven dwarfs with severe problems of adjustment.

  9. My story on the first wedding is stupid: I got up, made lunch and turned on the TV to watch my soap and was mad it was being pre-empted, but we didn’t have cable so I watched it. Same channel, creature of habit and that’s why I’ll catch some of the new wedding. Every Friday morning as I get ready for Meals on Wheels I watch the Today Show and The View, so I guess I’m just doing the same thing.

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