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Dr John Hawkins

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Andy's Wedding

Posted on 2008/08/27 23:48:52 (August 2008).

[Saturday 23rd August]
Anyone in a "mixed race" marriage like Chie and I will understand the complexities of getting married. If your two respective families live in two different countries, on different sides of the planet, there is no perfect solution in terms of where to hold the ceremony. Getting family and friends to travel half way round the world for a wedding isn't generally very practical, and then after that whichever country you decided to hold it in you're bound to end up making someone feel left out. In our case we had the "official" ceremony in Japan followed by a family get together in the UK a few months later, however I do still feel like something was a bit missing somehow.

Our friend Andy and his fiancee were faced with a similar dilemma and decided the best way to approach it was to get the legal stuff out of the way completely separately to the family celebrations - in that respect neither side would feel like they weren't going to the "real" wedding. However for even the simplest possibly of wedding ceremonies, you do at least need a pair of witnesses, and I was rather delighted and honoured that they chose me and Chie for this role.

So this morning we met up with Andy and his fiancee at a café in Islington, and after a "wedding breakfast" (and in this instance it was quite literally breakfast) we headed over to Islington Town Hall. Therein we had a bit of a wait before the registrar called the four of us in for the ceremony.

I have been to a number of weddings over the last few years, but never before one where there were only a handful of people in the room... and I have to say if anything this was a strong candidate for the most emotional and heartfelt I have ever attended. It was all over in a matter of minutes, but the whole thing felt really rather special, and I felt extremely privileged to have been a witness (in the most literal and legal sense!) to this event.

After the ceremony we headed down the road for a celebratory bottle of bubbly at the nearby Carluccio's, and then we all jumped in a taxi bound for Victoria station, as the newlyweds were heading straight off on their honeymoon.

After waving the happy couple off at Victoria, Chie and I then decided to walk into the centre of London from there, passing Buckingham Palace en route, where preparations were underway for the Olympic handover ceremony thing. We ended up on a long meandering stroll, which took us by way of a cracking pub called the Dover Castle, and ended up at the crazily cheap pizza place on Goodge Street. I rather like the fact that we were still wearing our posh frocks in there.

Comment 1

I quite like the idea of a very "stern and simple" wedding, but I guess that it wouldn't apply in Italy as I would be probably torn apart by angry parents and friends if I did something like that... :(

Posted by Lox at 2008/08/28 08:32:28.

Comment 2

Yes, Lox, I think John and Chi'e are quite glad they haven't got voluble Italian parents! Can't believe you didn't pick up on the sentence where John was allegedly in a posh frock.

Posted by John's Mum at 2008/08/28 16:55:52.

Comment 3

JM: No actually I did, but I thought it was better not to comment! :D

Posted by Lox at 2008/08/29 08:24:54.

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