I am physically exhausted. I ache all over, from my teeth to my toes. Luckily for me I don't have anything to do today apart from whinge and move slowly around the house being dramatic, despite the fact that I have no witnesses and therefore nobody can feel sorry for me/tell me it's all my own fault.
On Saturday afternoon I made my way back from Eastbourne. Unfortunately the trains in this country are run by Satan, who does not care so much for making travelling anywhere easy, pleasant or cheap. Saturday was even worse, though, because instead of my usually relatively-simple journey I was forced to sit on various trains for over three hours, alternately trying not to listen to people eating stickily, trying not to smack people in the face for talking inanely at at about a thousand decibels about the relative mertis of suitcases vs. rucksacks and trying to ignore the chewed bit of chewing gum which had been placed on the table in front of me. To distract myself I sang some songs at a level I decided was just about quiet enough not to be audible under the hum of the train, but then I noticed the lady opposite me looking at me strangely and realised that even though she might not have been able to hear me she would certainly have been able to see me moving my lips. So I gave that up and spend the rest of the journey gazing folornly at the countryside trickling past outside the window.
As I arrived home I watched a bit of rugby on the TV with my Dad, gazing (again, but this time with considerably more interest) at the festival of thighs until it was time to get ready to go out again.
Onto the train I hopped once again, and it swished and glided into the Big Smoke at the usual pace of slightly-slower-than-a-half-squashed-snail, and made my way to The Cock on Great Portland Street to meet some bloggers. There we sat, blinking and nervous at being away from our computers, unsure of how to form a sentence without the saving grace of a backspace button and ctrlaltdelete to back us up.
The drinks were cheap, though, and we began to relax. Then, once the pub was closing and we were all as relaxed as newts, Will
tantalised us all with the possibility of going to a club owned (or at least frequented) by Trisha Goddard, which is retrospect is one of the least exciting celebrity spots ever, like hanging out with the fat man off the National Insurance Helpline adverts, but at the time it seemed like an appealing prospect. As it turned out though, many other people had also been lured by Trisha's celebrity pull and the club was full up.
Not to be downhearted, off we went into a different club about the size of a undersized chess board which had defeaning dance music reverberating off the walls and into our ears, and we stood around drinking beer. I'm not sure whether it was the shots (was it sambucca or tequila?) suggested, of course, by the Welshman
, or what it was, but I think we all started having a pretty good time. I recall dancing, and I suspect I wasn't the only one.
Of course, I missed my last train, stayed on Huw's
sofa and had to get up while it was still dark so I could get home, get changed and go to the wedding. In retrospect it was hugely inevitable that I would end up missing the train, but it was totally worth it because the night was so fun, and lovely. it was great to meet those people. Other people I met were Astrid
and Sud (is that right?). I was sad not to meet Kelly
, who couldn't make it. Next time she will have to come for sure otherwise I will be having serious words.
I arrived home at eight on Sunday morning, and fell into bed to grab an hour of sleep before getting up, showering and putting on my wedding outfit. Which is comprised of a black satin dress I have worn twelve billion times before and my favourite shoes, shiny make-up and brushed hair. Sitting on the train armed with a monster cup of coffee I reflected that I didn't, to my great surprise, feel that bad. Tired, yes. Spaced out, of course, but not too hungover and not too terrible for three hours of sleep.
Arriving at the Orangery in Holland Park the mood was jubilant. Paul looked fabulous in his grey suit accessorised with the biggest smile I have seen. The room was beautiful with lots of windows and high ceilings, and that combined with the sun on the autumnal trees in the park made for a bright and happy atmosphere.
The ceremony itself was lovely. Lidija looked radiant in a cream vintage dress and a circle of red roses around her dark hair. As they said their vows they looked so happy, genuinely and sincerely, and I found myself welling up. The registrar was witty and pleasant, the bride and groom looked relaxed and gorgeous and nobody accidentally coughed when asked whether they could think of any lawful impediment to the marriage. In short, it was perfect.
Afterwards the Champagne flowed, the canapés canapéd and people chatted. The speeches were really very funny and my friend Mike played the piano. Pissed, of course, but very well nevertheless. Paul had asked me to sing, which I of course I have no qualms about doing. In fact, to my pleasure, the newlyweds danced their first dance as husband and wife to me singing One For My Baby.
At about four thirty we had got through all the Champagne, and Paul and Lidija climbed into a white taxi and were driven away to embark on their honeymoon. So of course, out of respect for their union we did the only thing we could possibly do to mark such a wonderful occassion. We went to the pub.
At about midnight I arrived home. Exhausted, of course, and drunk.
It was a great day, and a great weekend. I still feel like I have just climbed Everest (only without the sense of achievement or the ice-pick) and my body is on the verge of going on strike, but nevertheless I think it was all worth it.
I now am going to drink camomile tea and book myself into the Priory.