Tuesday, 7 November 2017

Summertime; Civic Week Celebrations || Video || Lifestyle

It's 6pm, the nights are slowly closing in, and i'm sitting here with a cup of Ovaltine (yes, i'm really that old!), all toasty by the the fireplace. A Hazy Shade of Winter by the ever-so-talented Simon and Garfunkel is on the Spotify, and although not winter yet, the fields are ripe, and the leaves are certainly brown. Another season has come around, and another six months of missed opportunities to update Green Tea Please. When will i learn?

But rather than dwell on it, i'm seizing the opportunity; these cold, quiet, autumnal evenings are the perfect time to get a couple of blog posts underway, and albeit, some may be a little seasonally inappropriate, i'm looking forward to sharing them with the blogosphere.

Since my last post in April - up until the beginning of August - life (and living in general) had taken a bit of a back-burner. Darren and I have been attempting to put as much away into our savings, as we're looking towards the future, so day trips, nights out, and weekend breaks had become fairly nonexistent. We anticipated that we needed to keep a little money to one side, to celebrate Darren's cousin becoming the Coldstreamer of the Scottish Borders town; quite the honour to lead the week-long celebrations. A sleek ballgown, a horse to hire, and some money to put towards a week of pub crawling was - i think - a good exception to our strict saving regime.

The citizens of Coldstream and its surrounding Border towns, welcomed the Coldstreamer into his post on the Sunday, with his right and lefthand men by his side. Past principles (ex-Coldstreamers) lined Henderson Park - where the celebrations began - along with the Coldstream Guards standing proud in their namesake town.

The week started with the annual "Ye Olde Dub Dash Foot Race". A light-hearted race between groups of Principles, men, women, and guards; how proud i was when my man was crowned winner of the men's race?!

On the Wednesday, Darren's sister and i hired horses and followed the Coldstreamer and Principles out on the Birgham ride-out. Having grown up with horses, and missing the thrill of sitting deep in the saddle, the Birgham ride-out was a great opportunity to re-live my childhood and teenage years.

Civic Week was particularly poignant for myself, as it marked the date my parents were introduced to Darren's family; living just over an hour's drive from each other meant our families had only just met, a year and a half after our relationship began. On the Thursday of Civic Week, Darren's family and friends welcomed my mam and dad to Coldstream, with good beer and fantastic hospitality. The Flodden ride-out was spectacular show; the sound of the horses galloping up the Flodden battle-field, i'm sure brought a tear to my mam's eye! Our night ended with a beautiful fireworks display over the River Tweed; the river that separates England and Scotland.

My folks headed back for Newcastle on the Friday morning, which left me and the girls time in the afternoon to get our hair did by the talented Emma at The Salon, and have our faces made unbelievably flawless by the beautiful Jodi, all in anticipation of the Civic Week Ball. Our fellas donned their kilt suits - and looked unreal, might i add - while us girls floated around in our beautiful ballgowns. I'd never felt so fancy in my life!! After a couple of glasses of wine, and revelling in the Scottish festivities, Darren convinced me to get on the dance floor and try out some of the traditional Scottish dances. By this point, i didn't seem to mind my two left feet tripping over everyone else's - hic!

Coldstream Civic Week ended on the Sunday with the "unsashing" of the Coldstreamer. As ambassador of Coldstream, his duties had come to an end. The sash will now be passed to his Principle righthand man, and the next summer will see the celebrations take place all over again.

This was one week that'll stay with me for a long time to come. I'll never tire of hearing the pipe band getting together for practice before performing to the town, leading the Principles on their ride-outs. I've learned so much about my second home, and the history surrounding Civic Week. Bring on the next one!


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