Karen’s mother and I have been estranged for about twenty years. Karen was only three when Samantha packed up and left. She wanted nothing to do with Karen. Now suddenly it’s all lights and bubbles.
Karen’s about to get married – this very day in fact – and as soon as an engagement was announced Samantha appeared out of the woodwork and began organizing things. Karen wanted a small quiet wedding; Samantha wanted it big. Karen wanted it in a little country church; Samantha wanted it in a sprawling garden. Karen wanted to wear something new and lovely that she could use as Sunday best after the wedding (we’re not particularly well-off); Samantha wanted a full-scale wedding gown. Karen thought little home-made cupcakes could be fun; Samantha wanted a three-tiered wedding cake. The list went on and on.
Of course Karen tried to be nice. She tried to steer convivially between her own wishes and the demands of her mother. Not particularly successfully I must admit. The wedding is today. It’s meant to be outside. It’s meant to be with an extravagant wedding gown. It’s meant to cater for at least two hundred people. The mother of the bride has a new hat. And a new dress. And a new handbag.
Anyway, I’m happy to say it looks like it’s raining. In fact it’s currently hosing down. And I’ve just got a text message from Karen and Gilbert. They got married yesterday in a registry office before leaving for their honeymoon.