If you’re making a relocation to London, surely you know what you’re getting into weather-wise. This might be an island, and you might see some tropical flora growing lushly, but there’s a reason London is often associated with woollen tweeds and umbrellas and wellies. That wasn’t about to dampen the spirits of hundreds of thousands of revelers, though, during the four-day Diamond Jubilee weekend the UK has just enjoyed in celebration of the Queen’s 60 years of reign. If you didn’t make your relocation to London in time for that, never fear, because there’s still the 2012 Olympics to come. This past weekend was actually a really good dry-run for the city in crowd management…well, maybe not the most “dry” of runs thanks to the craptastic rainy spring weather we’ve been drowning in lately, but you get what I mean. These history-making events are nothing to be passive about after a relocation to London—if you move here, you’ve gotta put your raincoat on, grab your brolly (Brit-speak for “umbrella”), and get out there to be a part of it.
Well, I’ll admit that my husband and I passed on watching Sunday’s boat pageant as a thousand vessels (including the Royal Barge holding the Queen and her family afloat) made their way along the Thames. Having made a relocation to London‘s west side, we were barely more than a mile from where it all kicked off near Battersea Park, but the early crowds and threatening sky were enough to opt for the best seats in the house: on our sofa watching the telly. It was a real shame to see the rain really come down just when the Royal Barge made its way to Tower Bridge—one of those, oh c’mon, really? You can’t surprise the rest of the world for once with your weather patterns? moments. It was almost like it was on cue for the river and news camera lenses to mist up, rendering the iconic view of Tower Bridge something out of Victorian times, or at least the first Robert Downey Sherlock Holmes movie. Interestingly enough, in no other year of recorded history had that June date seen fog on the Thames; hopefully they hadn’t been banking on that too much. In London’s defense, however, I do feel the need to clarify that “London fog” is actually not in reference to the weather here but the smog during the Industrial Revolution—rarely is it foggy, actually, as you’ll see when you make your relocation to London.
Now, this is entirely a matter of opinion, but if there was any Jubilee event I’d have willingly sacrificed to the rain gods, it would have been Monday night’s concert. I’m sorry, but that just was not a display of Britain’s finest. Sure, the iconic artists like Paul McCartney, Elton John, Tom Jones, Shirley Bassey, and Annie Lennox were to be expected, but, seriously, JLS? Robbie Williams? Kylie Minogue? Cheryl Cole? Bleh. Where were my boys from Crawley and Manchester, the alternative singers who made for a proper British Invasion in the ’80s? Elizabeth didn’t want to hear Morrissey play “The Queen is Dead”?? At least Madness was there. Quirky as ever, they performed “Our House” from the roof of Buckingham Palace, the front facade of which was projected onto to look like the terrace houses we commoners live in (when you make your relocation to London, your Relocation agent will probably show you a number of these Victorian beauties!).
*sigh* I just lived one of the most memorable moments since making our relocation to London (if not since I was born!), the final day of the Jubilee when the Royal Procession made its way to Buckingham Palace after the Queen attended service at St. Paul’s Cathedral. My husband and I finally got off our keesters to actually walk among the festivities we knew were so nearby. We aren’t hardcore enough to camp out all night for this stuff, but the best part was that we didn’t have to. When we lined up at The Mall to watch the Procession, we still ended up standing right behind those who did camp out for who knows how long. And when we conducted our Super Mall Shuffle in the throngs stepping through the horse poop to follow the Queen to the palace, we ended up standing right next to the same people again. Sucka’s…
Whereas our blocked balcony view at the Royal Wedding last year was such a bummer, we finally got to see the Royal Family wave from it on Tuesday, rain and all. Because, yes, by then the drizzle that had begun just as the Queen’s carriage rolled by had escalated into a decent rainfall. But it didn’t matter. We were hip-hip-hurray-ing and singing in the rain, a spirited unity that brought all of Britain together and included even us non-Brits, a special quality of this country sure to make you feel welcome after your relocation to London. 🙂