I just watched the Royal Wedding. Not 'a' Royal Wedding, but 'the Royal Wedding', the one I will be telling my children and grandchildren that I watching when I was much younger. I wanted to do a blog about two things: 1) My take on the Royal family and 2) My take on the wedding itself.
1) The Royal Family
Let me start by saying that I am not a Royalist and I never have been. I appreciate the Royal family and the charities they support. But in terms of the taxpayer cost and the archaic traditions that uphold the aristocracy I do not really find the Royal family part of a modern society.
Saying that however they are part of the history and heritage of this wonderful country. They also link us with other Commonwealth countries such as Australia and Canada etc in a unique way. I am not a patriotic person, or at least I don't think I am, and then I see a sea of Union Jacks waving on my television and I just think "I am proud to be British".
The Royal family is undoubtedly a part of this country, but whether they have a place in the future I can't really say. I enjoy having non-political heads of state to represent my country because let's face it.... politician's are irksome at the very least. But I think they should be more self-sufficient. I would be happier giving money to Royal charity fund, knowing that my contribution goes towards the charity work conducted by the Royals than my tax money going towards pomp and ceremony.
Kate and William, or the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge as I suppose I am 'meant' to write now, are perhaps the first step towards this new Royal family I talk about above. The fact that Kate isn't a Royal (I refuse to call anyone of the Upper Class a commoner) shows that William is not averse to breaking from those archaic rules and traditions that have frozen the Royal family in a time warp.
2. The Royal Wedding
I watched the entire wedding from my home in Felixstowe with gin fizz to drink, a Mediterranean buffet on the coffee table and a tub of pick'n'mix by my side. My family basically take any excuse to do this kind of thing; one week it is buying a special vintage cider to watch the Masterchef final and the next it is champagne flutes for Royalty. What can I say - we like an occassion.
As I mentioned earlier I am not a Royalist. I didn't really watch this as a Royal event but just as a British event; seeing people from across the country gather in London, waving Union Jack's and enjoying life... it really is a site to see. Plus I have a wedding coming up in 2012 so I need some tips! I love weddings. I can afford a McQueen wedding dress can't I? CAN'T I?
Speaking of the dress this was, of course, one of the highlights for me. Screw the dull religious bit with fifty gazillion boring prayers all saying the same thing (I am not religious, I don't mean to offend) I just want to get a glimpse of the dress and discuss it with my mum. I am such a girl.
As it happens the dress was absolutely stunning. The lace arms and shape of the dress, which was designed by Sarah Burton of Alexander McQueen, reminded me (and the whole world apparently) of Grace Kelly's wedding dress. It was so elegant, with beautiful embroidery at the base and a lovely plunging lace neckline into a lovely satin bodice. Kate, as William said at the altar: "you look beautiful".
I also enjoyed the final part of the day when they left Buckingham Palace for Clarance House. The couple appeared in a vintage and absolutely wonderful Aston Martin, which William himself was driving. It was covered in the usual post-wedding regalia of L-plates, a 'Just wed' sign and balloons trailing from the bumpers. It was a fun end to a day which could have otherwise been lifted from centuries earlier, Royalty having been wed at Westminster Abbey since 1066.
I am glad I watched the event, a piece of history which, regardless of my opinion of the Royal family, was a spectacular day.