Remember the Hen? Well, on Saturday the Hen became a bride. Last weekend, another friend, let’s call her Azalea, warned me that I wasn’t to ruin the wedding, reminding me that it wasn’t all about me. I was to check my suit. I was to be on time. I was to be good, not cause any trouble, and remember, above all, that it was the bride’s special day.
I’m not really sure what she expected me to do.
But, as it turns out, Azalea was right to warn me. On Friday morning, I checked my suit. There was a massive rip in the arse of the suit trousers. The kind of rip that you can’t get away with. The kind of rip that would make the ladies blush. The kind of rip that might steal a bride’s thunder.
I rushed to a dressmaker’s shop, exclaiming excitedly as I arrived that there was a “massive tear in the bum of my pants”. The dressmaker calmly wrote in her notebook, “repair seat of trousers”. It was alright. She’d be able to fix them that day.
I did some ill-advised drinking on Friday night and woke up with a heightened consciousness of the location of my head in relation to my neck that I don’t usually have.
I still left on time. 10:10 should be a fine time to leave Dublin for a 1:30 wedding in Cork. Should be.
As well as getting my suit repaired on Friday, I had ordered a bunch of flowers to be delivered to a friend of mine as a thank you for giving me a desk. This friend lives in Maynooth and I’ve never been to her house. I had obtained her address by covert means (asking another friend). Unfortunately, the florist couldn’t find her house. I spent much of my journey from Dublin to Cork on the phone trying to calm an irate florist and an equally irate flower-delivery man. I got to Cashel and realised that I had only an hour to get to Cork. Aargh!
I drove like the wind. I continued to take floral abuse. And I pulled up a three-minute walk from the church at 1:32. I dashed about looking for somewhere to buy a parking disc. As I was mid-dash, a car pulled up alongside me. A big fancy car. With a bride inside it. I froze. First because my heart said “awwww”, at the prettiest wedding dress ever and the nerves on the bride’s face. Second because I’d been spotted. It would be unacceptable to buy a parking disc for the car, now that the bride had seen me. And I had seen her. And most importantly, she had seen me seeing her. I trotted up the steps of the church, to the amusement of the bridesmaids who were lined up waiting for someone who wasn’t me. One of them enquired after the tear in my bottom. Nervously looking about for a bride, I bowed in front of the bridesmaids, lifting the tail of my jacket, so that they could see my bum was untorn.
I panted into the church. I scurried around the aisle (for some idiotic reason sticking to the groom’s side) and didn’t see a single familiar face. I was on the point of sitting alone at the back of the church when I heard a Psssst! It was Azalea, she looked at me with that look of motherly concern mixed with exasperation. A look that I see in the eyes of all my friends at one stage or another, whether those friends are male or female, older or younger. She told me where to sit, and I sat there.
The wedding was perfect. After the ceremony, I checked my phone. Somehow, the Maynooth florist had found my friend’s house. I checked my car. It was unticketed, unclamped and untowed. It was clearly a magical wedding.
The day continued to be perfect. I didn’t ruin it. And neither did anyone or anything else.