Posted by: jkirkby8712 | April 30, 2011

Friday, 29th April 2011 – ‘The’ Wedding – William and Kate

This was the wedding that the whole world was invited to, if you cared to watch it on the television, etc, and by the time it was all over, about 10pm eastern Australian time, already millions of words will have written about the occasion, so I don’t think I will add very much more about the event here. Mind you, in my own circle of family and friends, there were a lot of cynics and negative comments about the wedding, and the Royal family and the establishment in general. So my relatively favourable outlook towards the occasion was a bit off mainstream as far as that group was concerned. A good Irish friend of mine was quite ‘strong’ in his viewpoint –  he wrote [on FaceBook] – Hey…have a look at the news……AUSSIE reporters falling over themselves with “excitement”? and I’m talking about the MALE reporters…….give me a break…..anyone would think the Ranga is getting married…..ha ha… I have NEVER seen Aussies crawl and drool like I am witnessing now…..they are a foreigners….. what is the big deal???  Is there no end to the arrogance of this family….Baron of Carrickfergus? Do they know where it is?……….Geeze!!!!!!!!!!!!  Carrickfergus is my Home town….where I grew up……once the Capital of Ireland, and landing place of William of Orange on his way to the Battle of the Boyne where he defeated James 2nd (i think), so I don’t think Britain’s royal family has ANY claim to it….’

Well, as can be seen, my Irish friend was really making his ‘Irish’ love of the English plain for all to see!!  The Carrickfergus he was referring to is one of the new titles that the Queen has bestowed on her grandson, William.  Meanwhile, in another discussion the other night, I guess I made my feelings also obvious, from the other point of view, with the comments that – “Not exactly a Royalist ….., but I have grown up with both the Queen, and Charles, and in broad terms I admire the way she has undertaken her role, whatever value you might or might not attach to that role. She was just little Princess Liz when I first ‘met’ her, lol……………former PM, John Howard said once that there will never be a republic in Australia while the Queen is on the throne, and I think he will be proved correct. It a kind of subconscious Australian sense of ‘respect’ for the woman,  if perhaps not the institution itself!”

Anyway, that’s about all I wish to say in relation to the Royal Wedding –  it would not have been  hard, anywhere in the world over the past 24 hours or so, for readers to have come across ‘talk’ of the event in some manner or other.

Having said all that, I actually didn’t watch it!!! Well, in parts I did!  You see, the Royal family made the drastic mistake of scheduling the wedding, just when my football team was coming on to the Sydney football ground!!! Luckily, there was more than one television set in the house, so that my daughters who both happened to be here with me this evening had the choice. Young Jodie was with me – she came over to watch the football, so she was content, as was I, to have an occasional ‘peep’ on the other set to keep up with proceedings at Westminister Abbey, etc. Susie wasn’t really in the mood for either performance, and certainly not the wedding, but she popped out on the odd occasion to check out what was happening at ‘both’ venues. And yes, I was taping the wedding, and would watch it in it’s entirety later on over the weekend!

But in all truth, my concentration was on the Carlton football team’s away game against the Sydney Swans. Now the last time we defeated Sydney in their home city was in 1993, and in the past 18 games between the two teams, Carlton had only won two of those games!!!!  Not a good recent record, and when the match started in driving rain [it has been raining in Sydney for about the last three weeks], the odds of Carlton breaking that drought of losses looked dismal. It was a low scoring football match [in Australian Rules terms, as can be seen by the quarter  by quarter scores below – especially the second quarter – no goal by either team], and by the end of the third quarterf, there was still only one point between the two teams. Thankfully however, Carlton captain and champion player, Chris Judd led the way in the last quarter with some inspiring football, which would leave Saturday’s sports headlines to declare that ‘As the heavens opened, Carlton broke a 17-year drought at the SCG last night’, as we managed to get on top of the Swans, and achieve a deserved victory.  I was pleased for Jodie  – since she became interested in the football, Carlton have not given her a great deal to cheer about over recent years –  now in the past two weeks, live last Saturday night, and on the TV tonight, she has been able to enjoy two consecutive wins, watching with her Dad, when in the years before she was even thought of, I had some glorious years watching a very successful team [of the 70s and 80s]. So now after 6 rounds of the 2011 season, the Blues are in 3rd position [on the 16 team ladder] with 4 wins, 1 draw, and 1 loss [to last year’s Premiers].  For the record, tonight’s result:

Carlton Blues:      3.1.19   3.6.24     8.9.57    Final:  12.15.87

Sydney Swans:     5.2.32   5.8.38    8.8.56    Final:  10.11.71

We did catch the end of the Royal Wedding – even saw the traditional famous balcony kiss!! Meanwhile of course, the weekend newspapers here would be completely carried away with the events of British royalty  with descriptions such as ‘The fairytale begins’!!! I wonder if that is an apt description these days!!  Or ‘the roar of the crowd speaks volumes of approval’!  And as the ‘Age’ correspondent would report from inside the Abbey [according to the Age] –  ‘As the choir’s voices soared into the arches of the ancient abbey – the resting place of no fewer than 17 monarchs – spines tingled with the theatre of the moment. The collision of youth with lineage, continuity and tradition seemed briefly to reduce the distance between ancient histories and the here and now’.   Mmmmmm, I wonder if that writer is looking for some kind of literary prize?

John Stillwell/Associated Press


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