So despite a lingering bout of unwellness, I chose to stay up all night so I could watch the royal wedding. Most people would have gone to bed and set their alarm clocks. I'm too self aware to make what sounds like such a sensible decision. I'd just hit the snooze and go back to bed. If I had any chance in hell of being awake at 5:00 a.m., it had to be an all-nighter.
I watched a PVRed Toy Story 3, drank a 4:30 coffee and catnapped on the couch with the lights and TV on to prevent full-on sleep. And here I am a little before 11:00 in the morning feeling only slightly worse for wear. So I'd say it was worth it.
And there are the cynics out there who decry the royal wedding as a waste of our collective energy (Waves at McPal) but I can't help being thoroughly charmed by the whole thing. I suppose I could explain what it is about the royal wedding that pleases me.
1. It really brought the people of the UK together. The royal family is an enduring smbol of their history, and without any real political power, their influence is only so great as the people will allow it to be. Hence, I think, the affection. They've gone from being the government to being a living cultural relic. They're no more relevant than Japan's geisha, but people like indulging in the more asthetically pleasing aspects of their country's culture from time to time.
2. Speaking of asthetically pleasing, look at all those hats. I've always loved a good hat, but have rarely felt equal to the task of leaving the house in one. I fawn over them in stores, look at them online and fantasize about various hats I would pair with my dresses. But it's hard to pull off a good hat in this North American society without being looked at as an eccentric. And it's not that I mind people who know me thinking I'm odd due to my personality, as often happens. But I kind of feel squemish at strangers staring at me, which they would do were I to sport the sort of hats I covet.
3. It's of historical interest. I wasn't alive for Charles and Di, but I've seen the footage countless times. I kind of wanted to put in the effort to "be there" for this one. William will in my lifetime be my country's head of state. It's an international news story an estimated 2 billion people watched. It's enjoyable to be a part of that and to share a collective experience.
4. If my mom were alive, she'd have watched it. Maybe we would have arranged to watch it together. My aunt/godmother was all ready for it. In fact, I called her last night and her first question was whether I was all ready for the royal wedding. It was sort of a small bonding thing for her and I. She loves the royal family and so did my mom. She would have married around when Diana did, would have been pregnant with me around the time Diana was pregnant with William and now Mom's firstborn would have been married the same year as Diana's was. She adored Princess Di. I think this whole affair and it's timing would have really made her happy.
And my general impressions of the wedding itself were good. It was very restrained. Definitely elegant, but not over the top whatsoever. It was formal, traditional and understated compared to the passion and fervor the English had for the event. And considering the recession, I thought the modesty and simplicity were respectful. Plus now there's this needed boost to the UK's economy, and the royal family pretty much foot the bill for what's now going to be a huge tourism advertisement for London, England. Also, they all got the day off. Everybody wins. Not bad at all.
And, most importantly, I just really love love.