Arriving at the church is my most treasured memory of the wedding day. The ceremony it self still is somewhat of a blur up until the signing of the register.
I gracefully got in to the car after having a few photos leaving the house. (It wasn’t graceful, more of a clamber). Dad sat next to me and asked me if I wanted a mint, (I never travel without them) he had hidden a stash in his sporran. The journey we were about to embark upon should have taken 3-4 minutes. On this Saturday, it took 20. A nerve racking 20. We stopped at every light. There was gridlock in town and two ambulances (ambulanci?!) attempted to get through the small cobbled lanes of Stamford. The church was within view and I was now a dramatic 10 minutes late. As we drove around the cobbles near the graveyard outside the church I got another little pang of nerves, hot flash and a tummy jump. I thought it could have resulted in a minor panic attack but then I saw her.
With a backdrop of a grey and miserable Stamford, she stood there in her taupe bridesmaids dress, fur coat and a beautiful bouquet. She had a concerned look on her face till we locked eyes and she smiled. A small crowd had now gathered at the entrance of the church, none of which I knew and it was so nice to see someone so familiar. My best friend of 19 years, my chief bridesmaid Katie. I “gracefully” got out of the car, had some photos with my dad, hugged Katie and made my way into towards the seemingly huge archway of the church.
I was greeted by two of Michael’s ushers who I hadn’t seen in years and the rest of my bridesmaids and flower-girls. My veil was now over my face, I could hear Rachmaninoff,Rhapsody on the Theme of Paganini playing, and the Reverend was ushering me into the church. Deep breath. Quick glance at my Dad (who at this point was crying and continued to do so for the rest of the day) we linked arms and started to walk down the aisle. It was the most amazing and indescribable feeling, I could see Michael standing by the altar, there was a lot of camera flashing by my friends and family, then I was stood there. With a nod from my Daddy. I was nearly a wife. And I could not stop smiling.