So, our friend Becky was marrying Stuart at a wonderful location called Mythe Barn in Leicestershire. We had booked our flights thinking Delia would be recovering from a bout of chemo but since that had stopped, Delia was full of beans and able to fully enjoy the visit.
We flew Ryanair into Stansted on the Friday and drove to our Nottingham friends Mike and Sandra arriving just short of midnight. On Sunday we drove to Mythe Barn with time to settle into our room before the main event. The rooms were lovely, in building that had been converted from milking sheds and we actually had an adjoining door with some other friends (Robert and Teresa) from Leicester which was nice. Joining up with the arriving guests we stood around chatting until being directed into the function room. Becky’s arrival at the cermony started with her nephew coming in on his scooter and her bridesmaid neice following, as it turned out, slightly early since Becky wanted to get the music timed just right for her entry with mum and dad. The formalities were delightful, especially since Becky was so preoccupied with the “awful” in “lawfully” that she actually said she “knew of no unlawful impediment…” and had to repeat it. All’s well that ends well though and after a return down the aisle under a “guard of honour” archway of guests with upraised linked arms we all trooped outside for photos.
The weather had been wet, in fact the extended area around the barn had flooded but nothing too near. Fate was kind and we had a completely dry period for the photos and the rain only recommenced when we had started eating. The food was delicious and drink sufficient though some tables benefited from other more abstinent ones! The ham terrine, followed by mouthwatering fillet slices and a mix of desserts gave us something to go with the wine. Speeches were touchingly personal and heartfelt, especially Becky’s mum. The music that evening was good, I even danced! Delia really let go, months of pent-up energy let loose in an hour of energetic dancing.
The theme of the wedding included Becky & Stuart’s delight in travelling and the cake consisted of a pile of beautifully crafted suitcases. Whoever made the cake outdid themselves – lemon sponge and white chocolate, cookies and cream cake, fruitcake and white fondant and carrot cake with chocolate fondant. Slabs of which we got to eat over the following days.
Breakfast had much fewer guests since, the wedding having been on a Sunday, many guests had had to get back in time to go to work the next day. It was at this point that we were anointed with the slabs of cake! We had a slow drive back through the Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire countryside to our friends.
Our final day had us visiting Calke Abbey. A fascinating mansion that had been left almost as it was when the last owner had died. He had been a recluse and also continuing the line of collectors so the house was chock full of eclectic furniture, stuffed birds and animals and a wealth of other miscellany. As well as upstairs, the lengthy tunnels and preserved kitchens and storerooms along with photo galleries gave us a good impression of life downstairs.
An early start on Thursday and a relatively uneventful drive back to Stansted and our flight home.