Sunday, January 13, 2008

Happy Families

People go so overboard on weddings. It’s perfectly possible to get married for next to nothing. At the end of the day you’ll have had just as much fun – and a lot less stress. You won’t be worrying about the catering, the wedding flowers, the bridesmaid’s dress, the page boy, the flower girl, the music and everything else that some people get so uptight about.
My wife and I had a great wedding day. We had about thirty guests, maybe more. We both dressed up for the occasion: me in a purple suit with purple beribbed shirt and bow-tie (I still have the shirt); my wife in a long floral cotton dress she mostly made herself.
We had a cake, courtesy of one of my brothers-in-law, we had enough drink, and plenty of food, and it cost us very little. Some of our guests played the card game Happy Families (highly appropriate!) on the floor of our living room after the dinner was over and were still playing when we went to bed. Next day we flew to Rome (from London) for our honeymoon. The honeymoon cost a little more than twice as much as the wedding itself, but it was an all-paid affair, and we stayed in a delightful and very friendly hotel, and ate at the restaurant next door, because the hotel’s restaurant was being renovated. From memory we spent £50 on food and £50 on drink, and £120 on the honeymoon. Those figures were worth more thirty plus years ago, but they still weren’t extravagant.
So if someone is making a fuss about how much a wedding is going to cost, just remind them that it’s only the first day of many, and spending a life’s savings on it just isn’t worth it.

This picture of the wedding flowers was provided by Jason DeRusha (
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