Saturday, April 30

A Royal Wedding Extravaganza

We woke up early Friday morning, pulled ourselves together and headed for the royal wedding celebration in town.  Because William and Kate attended St. Andrews, the town and university feel a deep connection with them and planned a party to celebrate.  They gave out 1500 tickets and the fairmont hotel provided breakfast.  It was lovely, with activities for the children, face painting, stalls selling ice cream, cake and other foods, and loads of people so excited to be there.  There was live music with lots of highland dance, bagpipes, and drums.  And we got to see The Other Guys sing their youtube sensation in person (warning: it is quite funny, but is also college boy humor, so don't watch if you don't like that sort of thing).  It was quite the party.  This celebration was shown several times in the wedding coverage and the highlight was when Kate and Wills were on the balcony and they had a fly over - at that exact second (this was so well planned) we had a fly over as well.  Rather exciting.

We talked with several British friends at the party about the monarchy, because while we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, I overhead people saying things like "this is the most exciting day of my life", "I can't believe that we are seeing this..."  and to those exclamations I couldn't relate.  But two things became clear from observing the celebration in the quad and the BBC coverage.  First, this was a day to celebrate national pride.  There was an intense sense of patriotism as people waved flags and cheered for the queen.  Second, it was stated several times that this is a day when Britain sees the hope for their future.  We discovered that this seems to be on both a national level and a personal one.  "True Love Really Does Exist" read a sign; the older women on the bus a couple days ago were talking about how pleased they were Will and Kate were settling down and I couldn't help but feel that they were wishing for them what they wish for their own grandchildren; I overheard two college age girls saying how it was their dream wedding...

A beautiful slice of british culture to cherish and remember.

Breakfast at 8 am in the quad
the storyteller was a huge hit with the boys
I spent the first part of the morning helping children make crowns with volunteers from our church.
While the adults watched the wedding the kids played with a bug. 
Watching the wedding with so many others, cheering for the queen, clapping for the couple...
...and a little cake to celebrate!

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