I never get invited to weddings. I am not quite sure why, but I think it is a combination of:
(i) Social ineptitude/antisocial behaviour/poor communications skills/inability to mingle;
(ii) Not having really made friends at university due to spending 3 years weeping and going to France for the weekend;
(iii) Not having a party face. I think my demeanour is inadvertently a bit Jack Dee's face at times. Emma, with your face like a leaking barn conversion. Emma, with your face like a Aldi J-cloth. Emma, with your face like a listless fairground terrapin.
Whatever the reason, it means I get unfeasibly excited on the rare occasions I do get to go to one. Champagne! Strangers! Dressing up! Well, I didn't enjoy the one where I was sitting next to a mercenary, but APART from that one, I love weddings, and this one was a corker. The venue was gorgeous, as were a freakishly disproportionate number of the guests, the grooms were both magnificently kilted with thistly corsages and incandescently happy looking, the ceremony was very moving, the speeches a brilliant combination of hilarious and moving, and the Ceilidh dancing by the combined New York/Euro/Scottish contingents, erm, approximate. I used to have to do Scottish country dancing at Quaker summer camp, but everything but the vaguest heel-toe had completely deserted me. We did 'slithering', 'stamping' 'going the wrong way', 'banging into people' and 'whirling around out of control' instead, which seemed to work. I particularly liked the bit when, after several rounds of punishing dances, there was a tea, bacon sandwich and cake break. All exercise regimes should incorporate such an incentive.
There were also some great outfits. Most of the men wore full Highland regalia, even those from places like Munich and Poitiers and New York who had never touched a sporran in anger before. I especially liked one pair in not-quite-matching-but-highly-complementary chic grey kilts. The women wore shiny dresses (even I was, for once, quite pleased with my outfit: stripy silk assymetric dress from Rützou in soft greys and blues and pinks that I have owned for 3 years and worn once, violet Ferragamo sandals, and a Sara Berman opera jacket thingy I bought online in a fit of stupidity even more years ago and had never worn. I have not seen a picture of myself but in my HEAD it looked good and that's already a massive improvement on any of the other 4 times I've left the house in the past year) and there were a lot of Louboutins and sequins and the odd hat and all was astonishingly beautiful. It did reminded me how terribly I miss B and the Scot though and those of us left behind in Brussels without them vowed to try and meet up more often.
So that was the wedding, and it was brilliant and grown up and delightful and I wish them both a long and blissful union, ideally one during which they are both constrained to return to Brussels for several years at some point.
Other than that, the ancestral lands seemed in very fine fettle. There are a lot of shops in Glasgow, aren't there? I know that sounds odd, but really, there's very little I ever want to buy in Belgium, whereas Glasgow seemed a dangerous palace of retail delights. Not even exciting, independent, artisanal delights, just glorious mundanity like a giant Boots and department stores with make up counter ladies who don't try and chase you off with rudeness and supermarkets that open on Sunday and until 10 at night and sell you painkillers and cheap chocolate, and places that sell greetings cards that don't make you want to go and live in a cave for the rest of your life. I mean, I realise that on balance it's probably a good thing I live somewhere where I'm not consumed with retail lust all the time, but it was nice to bask in the welcoming warmth of Boots three for two offers on vitamins and Nurofen and the like. Also: Poundland. Franchises I wish to take back (or rather, wish someone else would take back) to Belgium: Boots. Office. Poundland. I ran amok in Poundland's Halloween Crap section, trying to buy bat deely boppers, light up lollipops and, mystifyingly, a fake sleeve tattoo for some child or other, then I had to have a stern word with myself and leave (I think I get a bit over-excited in Glasgow because everyone sounds like they're probably a member of my family, so going home with some cheap orange plastic tat is better than trying to shove several people I have convinced myself are my cousins into my suitcase).
The next day I went to visit Elsa who, knowing exactly what would fill me total hysterical joy, came to meet me off the bus with a ferret in her handbag. Badger, the ferret, was extremely sweet and funny and I was even allowed to hold onto his lead as he ferreted his way through the foliage to Advanced Staring from all passers-by.
After Badger, there was delicious CAKE and EWOK. This is Ewok, yawning.
And here he is looking totally charming wrapped up like Samuel Whiskers.
(Elsa and her family were completely lovely and welcoming too, especially given I basically invited myself along to her home-slash-petting-zoo without really asking if it was ok. But you know, there was a tiny ferret wrapped in a towel, and I am not made of stone)
After that there was venison shepherd's pie in Edinburgh (good), and Satan O'Leary's Megabus of winged death back to Charleroi at 6 this morning (very very bad) and now I do not really feel like a human at all, so I will stop here and return with my profound thoughts on Belgian electoral developments very soon. Have you seen Antonia is blogging again? IMPORTANT NEWS.
How was your weekend?
How was your weekend?