This weekend was Pat and Fliss’ wedding. They got married in a tiny village in Wales. We left it far too late to get cheap train tickets or a hotel anywhere within 20 miles of the wedding. We had already decided to go straight after work on Friday my idea was to stay somewhere half way between London and Birmingham but Ollie found a hotel in Walsall so booked that for Friday hoping to find somewhere close to the wedding for the Saturday. Well we still hadn’t got anywhere last Tuesday so thought that we had better just book another night in Walsall as it was only an hours drive away from the wedding.
We set off from Newbury Park where Ollie had parked the car at about 5:15 Friday night. A great time to set off especially on the Friday that most of the kids have broken up for the summer holidays! We arrived at the hotel at 9:30 after doing a Granddad Ted and driving around the roundabout at Junction 10 of the M6 as the multimap directions didn’t give us an exit! It had rained torrentially during all the bits that I drove (last time I drove on the M6 it rained really hard too!)
Saturday was of course Harry Potter release day so I had forewarned Ollie that we would need to find a Sainsbury’s. Not to worry of course because like EVERY SINGLE other time we have ever stayed in a hotel in England we were less than half a mile away from a Sainsbury’s!
We had to be at the wedding at 2pm so left just after 12 with plenty of time to travel the 60 miles or so. Armed with my Multimap directions we headed towards Shrewsbury. After we had passed the town, Multimap advised us to head down a B road. Shortly after we reached a crossroads. ‘Road ahead closed flood’ said the way we wanted to go. Oh we said as I scanned the map for an alternative route, “turn left”. No that was closed too, as was right. We passed a lady who was desperately trying to get home but the whole area was flooded. We decided to chance the original route – it surely couldn’t be that bad? Well we started to get worried as we were followed by an AA van – not a good sign. Then we saw the dip in the road and the cars driving through a huge puddle that was quite a distance across with water coming above their headlights. The AA van was for some teenagers in a Vauxhall Nova which had conked out after coming through. We decided to turn around. Directing Ollie to go back to the other side of Shrewsbury and down the A roads we took a 30 mile detour with only 45 minutes to go before the wedding. All was well, there were only a few deepish puddles to contend with until we hit the last village before the hotel. The river had burst its banks, houses were flooded and all the locals were congregated outside the pub on the bridge. We turned the corner and there’s another river running across the road! We’re so close! Only a mile to go! We’ll have to brave it. It’s only coming up to the top of the number plates. We made it through and got to the hotel to run inside just as they reached the bit that says “if anyone knows of any lawful impediment…” so we sat down very quickly!
The wedding itself was great. The food was fantastic, we had a whole chicken breast with salad to start followed by roast beef with trimmings and sticky toffee pudding. The speeches were great, and Ollie and I even got a special mention and a thank you for all the ideas that they pinched from our wedding! We heard Ollie’s song request – Build me up Buttercup by the Foundations but left before my choice – I am the one and only, Rick Astley! It had been raining all afternoon and we were worried about deep puddles in the dark.
So all in all a very good but tiring weekend. I just wish I had got some flood pictures but I was too busy trying to get us to the wedding on time and without getting too wet!