Virginia Barton

29 July 2013: Oh Happy Day

29 July 2013

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We saw the film Love in the Afternoon on our honeymoon, on a wet day in Cornwall, between quarrels and cream teas. That was when we discovered Our Tune: it was Fascination. Did the “King” sing it in the film? I’m not sure, but he’s our preferred artist.

No, not Elvis, Nat King Cole. Listening to it on YouTube has me brimming these days.

Maybe Oh Happy Day with Aretha Franklin is your Tune? Or The Anniversary Song with Andy Williams? Whatever it may be, perhaps it reminds you that you were young then, and hand-in-hand, excitedly looking into an unknown future.


On the famous 55th anniversary, July 26, 2013, we were invited for lunch with our eldest daughter. She it was, aged eight, who had organised the lunch for our TENTH anniversary! When reminded of this she obligingly reeled off the menu: lettuce, sliced tomatoes and cucumbers, ditto beetroot, hard-boiled eggs, Heinz salad cream, and mashed potatoes. Followed by, if she remembered rightly, Arctic Roll studded with candles! Not bad for an 8 year-old eh? There was home-made bunting and flowers on the table and we’ve never forgotten it. I can’t find my huge scrapbook or I would quote from the handmade card, which would have completed the celebration.

haggis2Our daughter asked what we would like for this lunch. At our request she cooked: haggis (liberally sprinkled with whisky by BH and the older males present), browned onion gravy, neeps (that’s turnips), mashed potatoes, cabbage. To which BH added bread-and-butter pudding with lashings of custard. Everything we had suggested with the addition of beef curry and sausages to fill in the cracks. Some of us ate all of it.

I might add that the temperature in London that day was in the high ‘twenties (that’s high 80’s Fahrenheit, folks). We did credit to the smashing culinary skills, after which we were bundled into the car like two old overstuffed vine leaves, to be driven home.


Inevitably we remembered other wedding anniversaries as well as the tenth. The 25th is described elsewhere, and the Golden one, only five years ago which was organised by the four children with all the fifteen grandchildren present. The very first anniversary was in Hong Kong, in a new home, with a brand new baby.

Looking back, I’ve just realised that every single one of these I have mentioned, was blessed with glorious sunny weather! I’m pretty sure that’s an omen.





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