Fordyce Maxwell: Liz wondered up to the last minute why a 12-year-old was getting married
AS A festivity-closer, Loch Lomond was new to me. It involved a lot of jumping up and down and several in-and-out rushes similar to Auld Lang Syne melees while the band belted out “You tak the high road…” at a tempo Kenneth McKellar would not have recognised. Along with, I seem to remember amid the mayhem, an occasional burst of the Proclaimers’ “I would walk 500 miles”.
Good fun while you have your strength, but not, I would judge, for anyone on heart medication or thinking of a hip operation. Most of the dancers, young and in their prime, weren’t, and the fact that it was new to me is only because I lead a sheltered life and don’t go to many weddings.
I wouldn’t have missed the one last weekend at Dryburgh Abbey and hotel where, our son Tom insisted, it was 18 months since the booking was made and his and Jenna’s military-style, no-detail-missed, preparations started. If so, the countdown was one of the fastest 18 months I’ve experienced. Given the speed at which birthdays now race past, that’s saying something.
Liz had the same feeling. Then again, she wondered up to the last minute why a 12-year-old was getting married. She realised why when Tom, at his leanest and smartest, and Jenna at her stunning best, exchanged vows. After that she was too worried about which of the new Mr & Mrs was going to be overcome most by emotion to worry about the gap between his real age and how she thinks of him.
The age illusion returned as school friends we remember helping Tom break greenhouse windows, dig holes in the garden, cut clothes lines and giggle at rude jokes, helped run the festivities. Why weren’t they all clustered round a screen playing Fifa World Cup? Their efforts included a timely “Get on with it!” when Tom faltered once or twice in his emotional speech, after an equally heartfelt one from his father-in-law Chris. There were dry eyes in the house, but not many at the top table – no more than there had been when Ebba appeared on the steps of the abbey chapter house as a flower girl.
A pity about a temperature only slightly above average for February and a grey sky, but that’s the British weather lottery for you. At least it didn’t rain. That might have spoiled the late evening fireworks display.
Probably because our own wedding was home-made, registrar office, families only, back to work next day, and successful, we’ve always preached low-key as best. After enjoying Tom and Jenna’s so much and feeling so proud of him, I might have changed my mind. «
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Weather for Edinburgh
Saturday 25 May 2013
Temperature: 6 C to 17 C
Wind Speed: 13 mph
Wind direction: West
Temperature: 9 C to 16 C
Wind Speed: 14 mph
Wind direction: South west