Monday, February 11, 2008
The Wedding Party
Our weekend party was, thankfully, less tragically eventful than Isabel Colegate's Shooting Party but the setting might well have been the same. The Grange is a nineteenth century manor house, set in 18 acres of beautiful grounds and as we approached, along the sweeping drive lined with ancient trees, I felt we might be travelling back in time to a grander age.
The most impressive tree I saw was this Himalayan fir, right outside the hotel and home to many rooks. I was fortunate to have my knowledgeable friend, Crinny, to identify this and many other species as we wandered in the brilliant sunshine.
The Grange is one of the Ramada Jarvis group of hotels; we have stayed in several and they have each been special, with excellent service and facilities and this one was the perfect alternative to the Caribbean! From the red carpet for the bride and groom to make their grand entrance, the superb cuisine and the spacious, comfortable rooms, every aspect of the celebration was arranged splendidly.
The weather was obligingly perfect and the time passed all too quickly. It was good for our two families to meet in such a relaxed environment and to have more time to get to know one another than at a more traditional wedding reception. I discovered that Anna's mother looks in here from time to time, so if you are reading this, Ann, I hope you got home safely and without too many detours and that you have worked out how to enter the Cranford draw.
We had a wonderful time catching up with family and friends, seeing how the Boy's old school and university friends have fared and generally having fun. There will be a few more stories coming out of the weekend in the next few days but, as posting photos of the happy couple is forbidden, I'll show a picture of another couple I saw in the hotel grounds. They looked very happy, too.