What struck me most - apart from the sheer volume of alcohol consumed - was how thoroughly great all the people were, no matter whether they were Garry's workmates from Dundee itself, or Rosa's friends and family who jetted in from around the globe. Everyone I had the pleasure of speaking to was great fun, got on with everyone else, and most importantly at least appeared to enjoy themselves thoroughly.
The example that perfectly encapsulates the friendly atmosphere for me though was when Rosa's brother and sister-in-law, Ed and Marika, offered to spare me the horrors of the return trip on the train (I had been delayed by 95 minutes on the way up because some inconsiderate person threw themselves in front of a train south of Birmingham, causing me to miss my connection) by ferrying me down to Oxford (essentially door to door) in the car they had hired to get to London on the same day I was due to leave. I had only met them on the Friday evening, although I believe I chatted at (rather than to, I blame the booze!) them some at the reception on the Saturday and Sunday's adventures in beach cricket and pubbage offered plenty of further chance to chat and get along.
Basically it felt like I was smiling all day every day from the moment I stepped off the train on Thursday evening until sometime during the lift back on Monday (which I was grateful to receive) when tiredness kicked in and overwhelmed my sense of well-being. Credit must go to all those I met, those I'd met before and those I met for the first (and likely last) time alike. Garry and Rosa somehow manage something that not many people I have ever met can do: they make me feel at ease, such that the real me can shine through; such that I can relax and enjoy myself; such that I don't feel the need to whinge (all the time, anyway) or curse existence and such that I can come out of my shell and talk to the fine people they surround themselves with; in truth there was more than just the alcohol to that.
For that I owe them a debt of thanks: a thanks for being good friends, a thanks for inviting me to attend their wedding and share in the joy that the event brought them, and their guests. A thanks for putting a smile on my face, even if it was just for a long weekend.