I finished work on the 15th of May 2009 for 2 weeks. That gave me a week before the wedding and a week after. We had a lot going on in those 2 weeks. Getting the keys to our military married quarters, meeting and greeting family coming from all over the UK and France, tying up the last little bits for the wedding, the actual wedding and moving house. Unfortunately, we couldn’t fit a honeymoon in at that point and so we agreed to save for a while and have a really special honeymoon at a later date.
We drove to RAF Cranwell on Monday the 18th of May 2009 to get the keys to our new house. It was a 2 bedroomed house on a street near the camp and it was mixed military and civilian. This was our first experience with military housing and so we didn’t know what to expect. I have to say that we were pleasantly surprised at the room proportions and the size of the garden. It wasn’t massive but it was bigger than we were expecting. I remember thinking ‘thank god we asked for gift vouchers for wedding gifts so that we could buy more furniture as there was no way our sparse furniture from the flat would fill the house’.
I had only seen the RAF Cranwell once before and it was a short visit at night and so couldn’t really appreciate what I was seeing. I didn’t really know what to expect but the one thing that stood out to me was the massive College Hall Officers’ Mess (CHOM). It was one of the most impressive buildings I had ever seen.
We hired a van and started moving our furniture etc. to the new house over the course of the week. The flat got steadily emptier until we literally only had the bare minimum left. We were due to officially move in on Monday the 25th of May, 2 days after the wedding.
On Wednesday the 20th of May 2009, Pete’s mum and stepdad flew over from France and came to stay at my parents house for the wedding. We collected them from East Midlands Airport and from there, we drove to our new house to show them around.
The rest of our families arrived over the course of the next couple of days and we spent our time driving round and spending time with them all in between last minute wedding preparations. Manic is a polite way of describing it. The night before the wedding we spent time with Pete’s brothers at their hotel. This was the same hotel we had booked to spend our wedding night and the night after in and so it was very convenient. Pete was spending the night there and would be getting ready with his brothers in the morning and I was due to spend the night at my parents. There were a lot of people staying at my parents that night and so I ended up sleeping on an air bed in the living room with my 5 year old nephew Tyla. I have never known a child so small that could take up so much space….starfish is not the word for what he was doing to take up so much space!! He seemed to sleep well though ha ha.