“Extraordinary scenes” amid a “sea of flags” and other cliches such as “his late mother” litter the commentaries which are good for drinking games and to be fair it must be hard to deliver continuous commentary about such predictable scenes with originality.
William in his scarlet uniform passes the cenotaph “saluting the war dead” supported by his newly promoted brother Cap’n Harry. The massed ranks of the world’s media have assembled near the entrance to the Abbey under their tent like temporary structures commentating in a variety of languages about William and Harry’s arrival. Harry has a full head of ginger hair but the camera angles are not flattering to William. Mrs Middleton wears a pearly blue Catherine Walker wool sleek and tailored crepe coat/dress and a glowing cat-got-the-cream smile. An Anna Valentine champagne dress under a non-fussy understated duck egg coat were Camilla’s choice. Philip Tracey hats seems to be de rigeur, apart from Sam Cam who chose to flout tradition. The Queen got her departure from Buckingham Palace marked by the state trumpeter and the crowds went wild. Her primrose coat over a bright matching dress looks very spring like. There was a flash of blue in the car which seems to have disappeared now. Perhaps she wears a rug when she travels?
It does seem rather odd to see minor royals arriving in mini coaches – they seem almost normal – but they are Lords, Ladies and Earls. Those higher up the chain of course travel in RR cars with and without number plates. One interesting one was KLL1 but the cars have been in the family, some of them, since the Queen was just a princess. One wonders however what they do with them all the rest of the time.
The Sarah Burton (Alexander McQueen) ivory and white dress we really want to see though finally appears – it has a train and a veil with a tiny lent diamond tiara and what look like chantilly lace sleeves and tapering in towards the neckline with a tiny row of buttons underneath from wrist to elbow. The armed police who, I imagine, have been told to watch the crowds can’t seem to be able to resist a sneaky peak over their shoulders as the car glides past. Oddly her sister and flower girls are all wearing white too but apparently this is also tradition. What must those teeny little girls be thinking as they meander down the tree-lined aisle before thousands of smiling faces?
I Was Glad by Parry is the entrance music and adds an air of majesty and history to the occasion. William whispers to Kate that she looks beautiful and there isn’t a dry eye in this house. Elton John and David Furnish have managed to avoid bringing their new baby – for which we are all grateful – and give “Guide Me Oh Thou Great Jehova” laldy. This segues into the marriage ceremony and the advice that marriage should not be entered into lightly – I don’t think there’s any chance of that under the circumstances and pomp. The vows are said very quietly and the rictus grimace melts into a genuine smile at the end as “Love Divine All Love Excelling” swells.
The passage about what genuine love is read by Catherine’s brother, who should have someone help him with his tie and his tan:
I appeal to you therefore by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned. For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function, so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching; the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness.
Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight. Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.
And was Jerusalem builded here? One can almost believe it.