Tuesday, 3 May 2011

A Very British Weekend

It’s been a very British weekend in our neck of the woods. Here’s what we got up to:

The Royal Wedding – Most on both sides of the Atlantic either watched it live or have seen the footage, talked about it, blogged about it, etc. Chris had to work during the big event and though I always planned to watch it, I didn’t realize how much of an emotional chord it would strike with me. Sitting in my living room admiring Westminster Abbey in all its blooming glory and the wave of well-wishers making their way to Buckingham Palace to pay tribute to William and Kate, I felt a real pride for the British and the Royal institution. Even LLC took some time out of moving her stuffed animals around on her animal train to show her respects. My other highlights:
  • Harry taking many a cheeky glance over his shoulder at Kate as she made her way up the aisle
  • The locally sourced flowers / greens / trees adorning Westminster Abbey – gorgeous
  • The BBC presenter that commented that “William is a very good driver,” as he chauffeured Kate off down the Mall in the Aston Martin – I don’t know if driving slowly down the empty Mall is really a test of driving skills but he could practically walk on water at that point
  • Seeing two young people seemingly truly in love, pomp and circumstance aside
Then came Saturday. When the sun comes out and the temperature hits about 12 C, Brits seem to do one of three things: to the beach, have a BBQ, have a picnic. We went with the picnic option with friends in Greenwich Park. It really wasn’t warm enough for my sundress but I ploughed ahead with it, still delusional from the warm spell that came over the Easter weekend but decidedly exited this past week. So we had sunshine tempered by a slight chill mixed with friends, a ball, yummy picnic treats and bubbles followed by a drink at The Trafalgar pub on the river. A delightful afternoon for all of the family – LLC particularly liked taking one bite out of each item of our picnic food and then discarding it, along with sticking her fist into the middle of a quiche.

Next, the cricket tour. Oh yes, cricket in action. You may know that Chris used to play cricket for a league team, which consumed the every Saturday for the best part of the year and left me a cricket widow! (Though I hasten to add that he stopped this of his own accord). Anyway, Chris still plays from time to time with a mainly touring team so off we all went to Norfolk to introduce LLC to the sport. Spectator enjoyment of cricket, to me, depends on having fine chat, fine wine and other general distractions to my disposal. We had even better this weekend with all of the above integrated into a family friendly weekend that involved just one game of cricket.

The tour kicked off with a delicious seafood lunch just beyond Cromer (at a crab house manned by a fine but fierce lady – if I could only do justice in painting a picture of her hunting down a wayward smoker on her premises, or shooing out customers who headed for their table too early....) followed by a paddle on the beach and then garden sports for all of the family on the grounds of the large Hall where we were all staying. There were a few other children in the mix with LLC, and she certainly had no shortage of adult attention either as she tucked into crabs, practiced her walking during a rounder’s game, waved to daddy on the cricket pitch and sat reading magazines with the ladies.

So overall a very British weekend, but also a very social weekend, which is something that is important to Chris and me.  We promised ourselves we would try to integrate LLC into activities that we enjoy and this weekend it really felt that we are finding this new life balance where adult activity continues, enhanced by the little one we have on board.  
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