The highlight of my weekend was undoubtedly attending one of my oldest friend’s weddings. I say oldest but I really mean longest (he’s the same age as me after all). It was a fantastic day, the bride looked amazing and he brushed up pretty well too. It was set in one of the most impressive castles I’ve seen (Menzies Castle) and it was really nice to see people I hadn’t seen in years. But almost overshadowing the day for me were a couple of things I found out…
Back at school 4 of us were really good friends. Myself, the groom and the two best men at the wedding (yep, two heads is better than one) – I’ll not name names to protect the innocent. Anyway, I moved down to Yorkshire 6 years ago and we didn’t see each other as much although I kept in touch more with the groom than the other two. They both got married (one 4 years ago and the other a year later) and I didn’t get invited. I didn’t think anything of it and despite being invited to the stag do for the first one I didn’t mention not being invited as I didn’t want to make him feel awkward. It was in Ireland so I just assumed they couldn’t invite everyone they wanted and as I’d moved away they’d moved on and that was fair enough.
When the second wedding happened a year later it was brought forward a few months for unforeseen circumstances and again when I wasn’t invited I just assumed that as it was a rushed job there wasn’t enough room, etc. I really didn’t take any offence, I’m not that sort of guy and I knew that weddings are expensive businesses.
When I got invited to this wedding we were one of the first people to accept. So it was with some surprise that mid-way through the evening the wife of my first friend came up to me and started to have a go about the fact that I never replied to their wedding invitation! I wracked my brains for a while because I’d forgotten all about it but eventually we came to realise that I had actually been invited but had never gotten the invitation! I hadn’t mentioned it at the time because I didn’t want to make waves and for the last 4 years they’d thought I was a rude git for ignoring them. I felt terrible even though looking back there’s not much else I could have done.
Still feeling bad about that can you imagine how I felt when the wife of my second friend came up to me and started having a go about the fact that I didn’t reply to their wedding invitation either?! That wedding was fresher in my memory because my mother was ill around that time and I distinctly remembered not being invited – but again the invite had never made it to my house. I couldn’t believe it. All these years the reason I hadn’t stayed in touch with two of my best friends was because of a simple misunderstanding. I’d just assumed they’d moved on in their lives whereas they were harbouring a grudge because I’d spurned their wedding invites. They’d thought it was out of character for me (which it absolutely was) but didn’t pick up the phone at the time so we never knew. Sort of put a dampener on the evening really (but not too badly).
Well, the lessons here are when you don’t hear from someone you invite to your wedding, phone them! Secondly, don’t trust the Royal Mail – people still steal mail and especially if it looks like there’s money in there (I guess a wedding invitation can look like a birthday card). Also, I’ve got a second chance to stay in touch with two of my oldest friends and their wives and that’s a chance I’m going to take.