Two recent international events of global significance have dominated the news recently but one leaves me happy, the other more sobered.
Despite six hours of watching every bit of possible television coverage of the Royal Wedding last Friday, I’m still enjoying tidbits of information that have dribbled out since. I arose at 4:30 am to cook eggs and sausage and brew coffee and tea in preparation for my British friend to join me with her famous scones, jam and whipped heavy cream (clotted cream substitute). We ate and talked our way through the entire affair. Such good “girl fun” -- a rarity for me, a mom of all boys.
I know the news has shifted to the assassination of Osama bin Laden – incredible news in its own right, and a triumph of the tireless efforts of multiple administrations and intelligence – but it is a subdued type of rejoicing. Certainly a long-awaited justice but one that has come with much human suffering and ended in bloodshed, violence and death, albeit the death of a crazy, evil man. Well, it’s not over yet; we all know that there will likely be retaliatory events but what, how and when remain uncomfortably mysterious. For now, we get to learn of all the details that went into the mission. I do find all that military stuff fascinating to be sure, but it doesn’t have the same effect on my psyche. Somehow the collective rejoicing and high spirits that came with months of eager anticipation of the royal wedding – not to mention that there was not a tea drop of terrorist activity and basically went off without a hitch – left us with a huge, happy dopamine flood. There were 45 crowned heads present and not one explosion. Approximately one million people gathered outside of Westminster Abbey and then promenaded down the Mall to
in orderly fashion. I hate to sound exclusive but it seems to be that only the British can pull this kind of thing off. They are known for their sense of orderliness and decorum. Buckingham Palace
But there is truly something special about a couple in love that people are cheering on to be together. It’s not some silly celebrity couple that have been together for three months, but one that has made a go of their relationship for nine years through such obstacles that we “regular people” don’t face like media pressures and centuries old royal tradition. Perhaps the visual feast and pageantry played a big part in making it so memorable and wonderful (for those of us Anglophiles and Royalty fans). The beautiful clothing, the rich music, the ancient words in the Anglican wedding service, the bells, even those wild hats were such fun to see. Kate and William carried off their wedding with grace and beauty and seem to bring hope for a future monarchy that blends the ancient with modern, respect for conventional royal tradition with breaking protocol in favor of fresh, innovative, practical ways to living as a royal. In light of the pain and suffering his mother experienced, William is courageously going forward with lessons learned and we will be watching supportively.
I realize these collective celebrations are so rare; they only come around once in a blue moon. It was truly a memorable weekend.