How hard can wedding planning be, asks James Marston

MY friend Lisa is getting married.

Lisa, a girl I first met many moons ago as I started my journalism career, has always made me laugh.

No longer a reporter, she now works in the public sector – something to do with health telling people not to smoke and drink – which also makes me laugh.

She’s getting married this month and this week I popped over to her country home in Tuddenham St Mary in the west of the county to find her in a somewhat anxious mood crawling around on her sitting room floor strewn with small bits of yellow paper with a large vodka in her hand.

“Whatever is the matter?” I said as she poured me a sundowner.

“James, this table plan is a nightmare. I just can’t do it.” she said.

Three calming cigarettes later we agreed it would have been much easier had she gone to Las Vegas.

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Anyway, seizing the opportunity to have at least a clue who’ll be listening to my hilarious anecdotes come the day on table 7, I suggested I help and even got on my hands and knees and moved around the names of people I didn’t know.

“Come on Lisa,” I said, “It can’t be that hard, it’s not a state banquet. Make a decision or we’ll be here until Quinquagesima Sunday. Now who’s Jean and does she have anything in common with Brian? Is Marion a mixer?”

By the time I left Lisa had made some progress and made a decision about some relatives she hasn’t seen for 20 years.

Wedding planning, by all accounts, isn’t easy and it seems most brides have sleepless nights about their big day.

Not only has poor Lisa got to decide where to sit all these people, she’s got to feed them as well.

She’s having a bouncy castle as well so it should be interesting.

I requested I am far from any children as nowadays you can never finish your conversation until some little child interrupts and demands (and usually gets) attention just when you’re getting to a punchline.

Apparently, Lisa tells me, I’m next to a girl called Sharon who is leaving her children at home and also enjoys her food so we’ll get on.

I’m not sure what to make of that.