Thirty years ago this summer, Lorna and I went on a 17 day bus tour of England and Europe. We traveled through England, Holland, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Italy, Monaco and France.
On July 29, 1981, the day of Charles' and Diana's wedding, we were in Germany, cruising on the Rhine River from Köln to Mainz. We then boarded a bus and rode to Rudesheim, Germany where our group spent the night.
After dinner that evening, Lorna and I found a little bar with a TV where we could watch the replay of the royal wedding that had taken place earlier that day. After that, we sat outside on a patio in the warm night air and partied to the music of the live band. That was the night I learned "The Chicken Dance" and met Dan Walters from Cape Town, South Africa, who became my dancing buddy for the rest of the tour. We had a blast and took every opportunity to 'cut a rug' during the rest of our Continental tour.
Here's the evidence of the night of July 29, 1981.
We sure had a lot of fun.
A couple of years before I retired, my vice principal came up to me and asked, "Do you remember someone from South Africa named Dan Walters"? Of course, I did and told my VP how we had met and about all the fun we had. Apparently Dan had 'googled' me (from South Africa) and called the phone number he found listed for my school. It was 7pm Eastern time and my VP was working late in his office and answered the phone. When the caller asked for my number, he said that he couldn't give out that information but took down Dan's e-mail address and said he'd pass it on to me and if I wanted to, I'd contact him by e-mail.
Dan is a very enthusiastic person. Boisterous and full of life. Other words to describe him are hilarious, exuberant, loud and friendly. He conveyed this so well over the phone to my VP that he thought Dan was some kind of crack-pot.
The VP was very surprised when at the mention of Dan's name, I knew exactly who he was talking about and in fact, I was thrilled he had tried to make contact.
Long story short, we got back in touch again and have been e-mail buddies since then. We send newsy e-mails back and forth a couple of times a year.
Today I remembered the day I met him, the day of The Royal Wedding in 1981. I sent him a copy of the photo.
I smiled a lot today remembering the European trip and that day in particular.
As to today's Royal Wedding. I thought Pippa looked stunning in her dress. What a figure! And LOVED Kate's wedding gown. I like the Brits' understated style. I liked the simplicity of William's uniform and the clean, soft lines of Kate's gown. It suited her perfectly and was certainly classic and timeless. Just google Princess Grace of Monaco's wedding dress and see how that style has certainly endured.
I liked the peck on the lips they snuck in before the 'official' kiss on the balcony. Some of the TV journalists didn't think they made a big enough deal of their kisses but I thought they were just right. As Kate came out onto the balcony, you could see how amazed she was at the size of the crowd. They couple certainly looked happy. I sure hope it lasts. Although the paparazzi (I think that means 'mosquitos' in Italian) are everywhere, I sure hope William and Kate are able to live their lives in relative peace. I sure hope their 'cottage' in Wales is remote or at least hard to get to and that Kate will keep herself occupied in a satisfying manner whilst William is away on duty as a search and rescue helicopter pilot. Maybe she's a knitter and there will be a nice local yarn shop in Anglesey where she can hang out for Knit Night.
I sure wish them the all the happiness and a very long and contented married life together.