Saturday 30th August - sunny
Wedding day arrived, and found some of us up and about quite early. The Buccas and O'Bennetts made it to the markets as everything was being set up and getting ready for business. We found Belinda's personal butcher, lots of fish, plenty of fruit and veg as well as all the knick knacks you would expect from the markets. We also found a smoothie place - apparently peanut butter and banana is a valid smoothie combination, and was surprisingly good.
We wandered VQ (as opposed to QV back in Melbourne), and admired the beautiful arcades - decided that Camperdown needs more arcades. Went into Harvey Nichols for the pure delight of having a man in a top hat open the door for us - a cheap thrill, unlike the products available for purchase inside.
TripAdvisor (and Pat) guided us to a great cafe for coffee and pre-wedding brunch, and then we headed back to the hotel to begin the beautification process.
Once we were all looking respectable, we headed down to the Leeds Town Hall. The boys experienced a sensation of "warmth" in their suits in the sunshine which, to be perfectly honest, they were not expecting. After some loitering in the foyer, it was Time. Wedding Time.
Annie and Andy looked brilliant - Andy very dapper, and Annie very bridal (her words, not mine - I said she looked totes amazeballs). With the ceremony complete (and rings firmly wedged on fingers), it was time for the bit we'd all been waiting for - the double decker bus ride! Full marks to the driver for putting up with our excessive enthusiasm, and also for managing to squeeze the bus into the driveway at the reception venue.
The venue was stunning - impossible to explain its grandeur in words, even the photos will not do it justice. And of course, it was decorated in true Thornshire style - handmade bunting, directions to places of significance all over the world, and model planes flying overhead. Not to mention the props for hilarious (and sometimes inappropriate) photos and the slide show of Annie and Andy's life experiences. Just perfect.
Paella - delicious.
Speeches - funny, moving, heartfelt.
Dance floor - doesn't exist any more, we carved it up.
Music - infectious.
Cake - too cute.
Company - couldn't fault it.
Pork rolls - exactly what we needed.
It was definitely the best British wedding I've ever been to! Maya put us all to shame with her energy on the dance floor, and Pat pulled out some moves that we can only assume he learnt at the Northern College of Contemporary Dance. Annie and Andy's family and friends were all so welcoming, and fun, we simply had the most amazing night. Annie's dad stole the show with his ukelele song, while Andy's dad won us over with his "Andy vintage" brandy. Pat made a new bestie on the night, and showed us all the "secret toilet" (which then wasn't so secret after all). Belinda discovered the joy of hugs, and has been practising ever since. Ian had us fooled regarding his occupation (until Pat caught him out with the square root of -1) and Annie's dad earned our respect by knowing the man who discovered Jorvik's fossilised poo. And I'm sure there's more that I've forgotten to include, but I think you get the general idea.
Eventually we all had to return to Travelodge, and most of us went to bed. Except for Lady Faffalot and Honeyslide, but that's another story...