Well, the big day is here. A day that the world has been looking forward to for so long. Prince William of Wales is marrying the woman of his dreams and we are all wishing them well. In fact many of us will watch them tie the knot either by being there in London or maybe like me you'll watch it live via satellite on the TV.
Actually, with all the talk of the Royal wedding it has reminded me of Charles and Dianna's wedding thirty odd years ago (was it 1980 or 1981?) I can't remember the exact date but I remember what I was doing on that day. I was serving as Soldier in the British Army and was stationed in Germany at the time.
We all got the day off and I remember watching the wedding on TV then too, but more than that I remember it for something that happened to us not long after.
Not too long before the wedding we'd just got a new officer posted in to us. A young Lieutenant from the Coldstream Guards by the name of Mr McCorkindale. He was a Helicopter pilot and was posted to my squadron in Germany.
What was unusual was that Mr Mcorkindale really didn't like to be called 'sir' or even 'boss' He wanted his men to know him as Simon and told us that while he couldn't do anything about it on base, when we were off base he didn't want to hear those words!
Naturally this went down with his fellow officers like turpentine can put out a fire (really don't try that!). They hated it, and they hated him for it, but he really didn't care.
We found out that he really didn't want to be a Soldier but as the son of a wealthy landowner on Scotland he'd been told by 'daddy' that if he didn't join the 'old regiment' (the Guards) then he'd lose his inheritance so join he did!
A couple of years after joining and a stint in Ireland he went on to do something he really wanted to do and went to become a Helicopter pilot still in the Army but flying reconnaissance helicopters with the Army Air Corps.
British society tries to tell us that there are no class distinctions any more, the Army tells us that's a load of rubbish and it runs on such a thing, the man who upsets it better be very good or very brave! There have been men who came up through the ranks, but they are few and very far between! Simon may have been from the upper class but he really broke the mold! But then came the thing that put everything into perspective.
Our Officers really wanted to put Simon in his place and I'm sure they were looking for an opportunity to do so, then one day the sergeant major noticed something in the squadron post. A personal invite for Simon to Charles and Diana's wedding! Not only that but it turned out he was related to both of them!
Imagine it, here is a guy who's a junior officer, a pain in the butt to all those career officers but his men love him and not only that but he's invited to a celebration that they in their wildest dreams can't even get within a hundred yards of the building!
Coming forward to today, I wonder if Simon will be there again, enjoying the day with family and friends. Will he be the same man I knew? Who knows.
But more than all that the wedding has reminded me that I've got an invite to a wedding that one day will put even this occasion in the shade, a day when all of Heaven and Earth will celebrate as the son of the creator of all that exists will finally marry his bride.
William waited seven years to marry Kate, probably to help protect her and get her ready for the role she is destined to play. The groom of the wedding I'm talking about has waited a lot longer than that. There have been times when his bride has broken his heart, but his love has never wavered and he loves her the same today as he did when the invitations first went out!
One day I'm going to be seated in a place of honor at the table of the marriage feast of the Lamb of God. What a wedding that will be!
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