Today I walked home in a downpour which soaked me so thoroughly, I might as well have been swimming. By the time I got indoors (having had to detour to the back yard to bring in my sodden laundry from the line) I felt painfully cold and really quite wretched. It was wonderful! I love being out in a storm, getting drenched, coming home to warmth and comfort. True, I would rather remain at home the whole time, watching the storm from within shelter. And I don't ever like getting wet on my way somewhere other than home. But to me, cosiness is made all the more lovely by having been slightly miserable beforehand.
Tonight I will be watching the royal wedding, wrapped in blankets, with hot chocolate and popcorn. I love these occasions. I remember as a child watching the wedding of Charles and Diana in the home of the only family member who had a colour tv; several others had gathered there for the same reason. I have seen all the Windsor weddings since. (I loved Catherine's dress best but thought Sarah the prettiest bride.)
As I wrote on instagram this morning, love is almost always the reason people struggle through the trials of their life - it is what we fight for, what we open ourselves for. Commentators have been deriding the current excitement for the wedding, especially given what tragedies are occuring around the world. But I say that when we get the chance to celebrate love, we should take it. Without a little shared happiness, loveliness, and romance, we might all become bleak with despair. Just because I enjoy the sweet and silly wedding fervour doesn't mean I'm unaware of homelessness on London streets, or American school shootings, or the war in Yemen.
And somehow, the misery of the world makes the beauty of marriage all that more enchanting. Of course, I would rather we did without war, corruption, grief. If the world was a peaceful place, our marriages would probably be stronger, happier, more enduring. But romance in dark times is surely a blessing.