So I knew pretty much from day 1 that I didn't want the big hotel wedding with chicken wrapped in bacon and overcooked carrots and all the trimmings- I've never really been an overly formal person, and wonderfully (because he is wonderful!) Mr Bean and I were on the same page with this one from the start. Because he lives in Portsmouth, (South Coast) and I live in Sheffield (North) and my parents live on the East Coast (where we'll be getting married) and I have previously lived in Hamburg, Germany and Vienna, Austria we always knew that this was going to either be teeeny tiny (except his immediate, nuclear family is 14 people so not that teeny tiny) or BIG. They say it takes a village to raise a child, and in the case of our parents, it seems that it's going to take a village to marry us off. We all had our lists in mind of friends from all the different places that we've lived (we're both pretty good at staying in contact with people) and the pruned down, bare-bones guest list came in at (deep breath...) 230 people. 23o wonderful friends and relatives who we want to begin our married lives together in the company of, but 230 people non the less.
So the search for a venue began. Lets get one thing clear here from the start- Mr Bean and I did NOT want to bankrupt ourselves for this wedding. We're moving into Married Quarters and starting our new lives together straight afterwar
ds, and whilst this is going to be an incredible amazing day, it is not the be all and end all, so we're doing this beast on a budget.
Enter: Sarah's dream venue. I worked here as a cafe assistant my first summer of 6th form, and I love it. As in LOVE LOVE LOVE it. In my head, this was always where I was going to have my reception. It's a 10th Century tithe barn, on the beach, with plenty of room and the most gorgeous thatched roof you will ever see! Its country, it's massive, it's 10 minutes from my house, noone really gets married there so last minute avai
lability is usually pretty good, and perfect in every way! This was the one thing I was pretty certain on, and we were ready to book it the minute we'd set a date!
What's that you say? Show me a pic?
Well... if you insist:
We wish. Unfortunately, there was a small, furry technical hitch in our wonderful, flawless reception plan.
Bats. Ooh yeah- the little freaky flying mammals. Pipistrelle bats to be precise. These little darlings are endangered species, and can't be disturbed after dusk- therefore we could hire the barn, but had to vacate by 6pm. On our wedding day. The guy who was in charge of the barn said he'd rung the council but there was no definite date for bat removal. Our beautiful wedding location was no more... *cries*
And that's when it hits: reality check number one of the wedding planning process. This day is not about a beautiful thatched country barn, or photo opportunities, or my perfect country chic location. This is about Mr B and Me, with everyone we're close to and care about being around us when we make some pretty massive promises and get to start a brand new life together! I don't know about you, but I want to be with this boy so much I'd marry him in a multi-story car park if needs be. (Come to think of it, if we were into grunge that'd look pretty cool...)
So we didn't get the barn. Mr B hit the internet and started scouring for alternatives, and as for what we ended up with... well that's another post. But safe to say we got a reality check on the priority front WAY before we were expecting one- good though, it stopped us getting into bad habits!!