Does perfection need planning?

I am often accused of over planning. Be more spontaneous I am told. Let life decide. Relax and enjoy.

But we went to a completely perfect wedding this week – our niece Lucy and her new husband Dan. And Lucy had planned it to within an inch of its life. I genuinely do not think it could have been any better.

The Coleman clan

The ceremony itself was just the right side of emotional, with few cheeks left unblemished by a tear. Then a wonderful confetti procession, a delicious meal, waiters who unexpectedly turned into singers and dancers, a saxophonist, a late night pizza van, and dancing into the night. Add in a couple of inevitable family dramas, and it’s was perfection.

Most importantly of course, Lucy and Dan had the day that they had wanted and that had been in planning for so long. And I think that everyone enjoyed themselves, from the young kids, to the oldies. Thanks Lucy & Dan and congratulations.

Of course I understand there is a place for spontaneity, and some of my best moments are unplanned. Perhaps emerging from a tunnel in the boat, when we discover a new view over amazing countryside. Perhaps when we bump into old friends unexpectedly. Perhaps when we decide on a whim to have an adventure.

But to quote the A-Team (showing my age I know) “I love it when a plan comes together”.

What about you? Are you a planner or a discoverer?

Married for 35 years

Monday was our 35th wedding anniversary. Thirty five years is an awfully long time. When we first got married I was just 22 and knew very little about the world. In the 35 years since then, Mandy and I have both changed so much. Many people tell you that to make a marriage successful you need to work at it. Of course that is true, but I think there is also a huge element of luck. We are fortunate that we have tended to change together rather than change away from each other. I know many couples who were perfectly suited when they married but over the years have simply grown apart.

Incredible hair!

This year was always going to be critical for the two of us. After many years when work dominated my life and I was often away from home during the week, suddenly we would be together all day every day – this summer in the confined space of a narrowboat. And on top of that, retirement brings a lot of time to reflect on what you want from life.

So you can imagine how delighted I am that we seem to be rubbing along pretty well. We are both really enjoying the contrast of peaceful miles of country canals with the bustle of industrial city centres. We are both enjoying both meeting old friends and family we have not seen for years, and also the solitude of time to ourselves. So different from who we were 35 years ago, but still in love.

Sorry for soppy post. Back to normal grumbling next week.

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