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Katie’s Long-Distance Wedding

Katie and her groom meet the man who'll be marrying them, and someone just can't stop shopping...

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Katie Maloy’s Real Bride Blog; Katie and UH meet the priest

Katie, 33, is in PR, while her ex-soldier H2B, 38, is a close protection bodyguard (also known as UH: Ultimate Hero). She is sharing her wedding diary with us in the countdown to her big day on April 30, 2011.

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Brides, I love having UH home; it’s bliss. I sometimes wonder how I survived without him for so long and no I’m not just talking about the periods when he’s in the Middle East but my whole life in fact. What on Earth was I doing pre-UH? I remember spending an awful lot of time and money on Portobello Road and I used to go to about three parties a week (all on school nights). But seriously, how I survived the first 32 years of my life I will never know. After a long day at work I come home and UH has made my dinner – right down to my very picky stipulations. Creative salads, lots of herbs, not too much fat, perfectly plump chicken breasts, fishcakes galore. And he always makes the perfect cup of tea or ‘brew’ as he calls it (I think this is an attempt at making it sound more macho and less old lady).

He happily watches my TV addictions and even pretends to be interested. During Top Model, he pipes up with ‘too skinny’, ‘jaw too big’, ‘very commercial’ ‘not versatile’. This is good! Now he’s in a perfect position to keep Oracle Nomad up to date. I played this game with him yesterday and got him to read the current issue of You and Your Wedding flicking the pages this is precisely what he said about the dresses; ‘looks like a duck’, ‘too fluffy’, ‘too flowery’, ‘can’t walk in it’, ‘yes’, ‘no’, ‘maybe’, ‘makes her look like her head is stuck on her right shoulder’, ‘like that’, ‘you would look good in that’, ‘nice shape’… I love it, UH is a source of endless entertainment.

As UH is only home for a short time we have to cram everything in. This includes all of our wedding planning, maintenance on the houses, seeing family and friends, two birthdays, one wedding and I still do a full working week. A couple of evenings ago, we had our first meeting with the priest. I received a letter from the Cathedral telling me the priest had requested a meeting with us. Immediately I thought I was in trouble for not going to mass regularly so I was a little on edge about it. I came home from work to find UH in his ‘baggies’ as he calls them and looking not very ‘church’ like. I whipped out a frilly and highly feminine number that I thought was more appropriate than the skinny jeans I was wearing. Here is exactly what UH did to prepare for the priest… He whipped off his trackies, put on some ripped jeans tucked the ‘baggies’ T-shirt in to them, pulled on his cowboy boots and splashed some water in his hair. Blink and you would have missed it. Whilst we were standing on the doorstep to the priest’s house, UH worryingly looked far too much like a ‘rebel without a cause’. He even rested his thumbs on his belt buckle. ‘Try and look Catholic’ I chirped. Not that he is, incidentally UH is Church of England and proudly so mostly because England is in the title. The priest is aware of this – more than 50% of the marriages carried out in Catholic Churches in the UK are ‘mixed’.

I wasn’t so worried about UH’s attire when the priest opened the door wearing shorts and a polo shirt, I was convinced he would be in his robes. UH cut quite a hard-core figure against the backdrop of the presbytery but as usual took it all in his heroic stride. To my relief the priest didn’t want to talk about my church attendance but rather the seriousness of marriage.

“You need to understand that marriage is an EXCLUSIVE partnership between two people and this kind of commitment is far more serious than you might think. Many couples crumble under the pressure as they underestimate how much it will change their relationship.” The priest went on to explain how much pressure and strain UH and I will experience after we are married and even couples who have been together for 10 years and with two children still need marriage preparation. As the priest got deeper and deeper into his explanation of marriage I got more and more excited as I am so ready for it, because, crucially, I have found the perfect man for me. I announced ‘Father everything you’re saying really resonates with me. I’m completely committed and ready for marriage’. Almost immediately the priest looked at my ‘rebel without a cause’ groom in ripped jeans and baggies T-shirt with tattoos poking out and asked :and you?” “I’m all over it” piped UH. I couldn’t contain my laughter. UH was asked potentially one of the most seriously important questions of his life and he responded with ‘I’m all over it’. I was blissfully happy though, because the truth is; he is. The priest didn’t scare my hero or cause him to break out in a stress-induced sweat, he is all over it in his ripped jeans and gorgeous shoulders. I was beaming with pride.

The hero does have his moments though. After we began to plan our wedding it quickly dawned on us how much it was going it cost. We don’t have a budget either which is probably a bad thing so instead of getting too carried away about saving we decided to be ‘sensible’ with our spending. Apart from one ASOS order I have been really controlled with my shopping – as much as I am longing for the cut-out maxi-dress in the Topshop window that I may never find again. At the beginning it was harder for UH though. We would go to the Norfolk house after he had been in the Middle East and on arrival I would trip over boxes in the conservatory. These all turned out to be parts for one of the three Italian Lancia cars he is doing up, although we agreed to put that project on hiatus until we had this epic wedding paid for. The ironic thing is that he doesn’t even have time to put the parts into the cars. Even more ironically one of them is for racing; when will he have time to do that? Last night I asked what sound system he would put in it, both he and my brother immediately shot me down, apparently racecars don’t have stereos.

We had a very interesting conversation the other night as I discovered an eBay purchase on his laptop, this is how it rolled:

KM: Lover why do you need to leave feedback on eBay?

UH: Don’t you worry about that young lady

KM: Why? Is it a surprise for me?

UH: No it isn’t

KM: Well what is it then?

UH: It’s a fish finder

KM: What in the world is a fish finder?

UH: It’s a GPS tracking device to find fish when you go fishing

KM: What?!

UH: For the boat

KM: We don’t use the boat Lover, where do you want to drive it? Along Camden Canal?!

UH: No, but when we do use the boat we now have a fish finder

Girls, we may not have a florist but at least we have a fish finder!

‘Til next week

Katie xx

Read Katie’s wedding diary week 1 here.

Read Katie’s wedding diary week 2 here.

Read Katie’s wedding diary week 3 here.

Read Katie’s wedding diary week 4 here.

Read Katie’s wedding diary week 5 here.

Read Katie’s wedding diary week 6 here.

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Read Katie’s wedding diary week 7 here.