Love is in the air
In the lead-up to Meghan and Harry’s big day, we asked local TV personalities about their own wedding memories.
Cristina Ionda, plays Gina in The Brokenwood Mysteries, Prime
“In Romania we have a wedding tradition where close friends of the groom or male relatives will steal the bride. For me, it was out of the blue. I knew it might happen but I was shocked when my cousin kidnapped me. He pulled me aside and said he wanted to ask me something but it was too loud and crowded inside so he led me outside to an open car where there were three more men waiting. Then I knew I was being kidnapped! There’s nothing you can do so I didn’t fight back because it’s all part of the game. I stepped in the car and we drove to a park where they gave me some coffee. Then they took my shoes and my cousin delivered them to my new husband as proof of life. He acted as an emissary while the other kidnappers stayed with me and began negotiations over the phone. My captors asked for four bottles of champagne. Traditionally, the kidnappers can ask for money, alcohol or whatever. I’ve heard stories of people asking for thousands of dollars. My husband conferred with my godfather and it was decided they would give them a box of Dom Perignon for my safe return. My husband had to pay for the champagne first before I was handed over.”
Janika ter Allen, Prime First At 5.30 presenter
“It bucketed down all day and looked like we might need
gumboots. Then the sun came out 40 minutes before the ceremony and we rushed outside at the last moment. Journalists are always pushing deadlines.”
Susie Nordqvist, Newshub Live At 4pm presenter, Three
“We got married at a resort in the mountains not far from where I grew up in Mid Canterbury. While I had visions of exchanging vows on a beach in the height of summer, our November wedding in the snow was pretty magical. We got married after the 2011 Rugby World Cup, giving my Irish husband’s rugby-mad family and friends two pretty good reasons to travel to the ends of the Earth.”
Matt Watson, hosts ITM Fishing Classics, Prime
“My best man and groomsmen came to pick me up the night before my wedding to go to the Weymouth cossie club for a few quiet beers. Knowing what it can be like when we all get together, I deliberately wore shorts and jandals in the middle of winter, that way if the boys decided to kick on to a pub or club I wouldn’t be able to get in and I’d have to come home. What I didn’t bank on is that one of our mates was now the bar manager
at a pub in Manukau and I got dragged in there. I eventually made it back home at 6am when a pitbull started chasing me. I had to seek refuge in a boat until daylight with the dog circling the whole time. Still, I managed to get scrubbed up and in the limo at 8.30am to get photos with the groomsmen, then I was off to get married and my bride was none the wiser.”
1. Diana was the first royal bride not to use the word ‘obey’ in her wedding vows. She promised to, “Love, honour, comfort and keep” when she married Prince Charles. Kate Middleton made the same promise when she married William.
2. When William and Kate married, both the groom and Harry had military uniforms with special built-in sweat guards so that there were no embarrassing stains under the glare of the television lights.
3. Queen Victoria is credited with starting the tradition of wearing a white wedding dress. Up until then brides wore whatever colour they chose. Since Victoria, royal brides have also included a sprig of myrtle in the wedding bouquet, symbolising love and fertility. In a touching tribute to her groom, Kate’s bouquet also included the flower Sweet William.
4. Diana’s wedding shoes had the initials C and D painted on the soles with a heart in between them.
5. British royal wedding menus are traditionally printed in French. It dates back to the time when British monarchs had only French chefs in the kitchen.
6. Diana might have made a multiple name mix-up at her wedding to Charles, calling him ‘Philip Charles Arthur George’ instead of ‘Charles Philip Arthur George’ but Charles also made a mistake. He said ‘thy goods’ in his vows instead of ‘my worldly goods’.
7. Coronation Street’s Ken and Deirdre first married in 1981, two days before Charles and Diana. They married for the second time in 2005, an event watched by 13 million viewers compared with the nine million who watched Prince Charles marry Camilla Parker Bowles the next day.
8. Even royals have wedding disasters. When Princess Elizabeth’s tiara snapped on her wedding day, the court jeweller was given a police escort to his work room to carry out repairs. And Diana spilled perfume on the way to the ceremony and had to hold her dress in a special way to cover the stain.
9. Kate and William married on Arbour Day. The trees that lined the aisles at Westminster Abbey were later planted at Prince Charles’ home in Wales.
10. Kate’s brother James Middleton came up with the perfect wedding present for a dog-loving royal couple. The cocker spaniel Lupo was his wedding gift.
Graham Wright and Susie Nordqvist
Mike Sanders and Wilhelmina Shrimpton
Ross Karl and Janika ter Allen
Cristina Ionda’s wedding to George Tudor
Prince Charles and Diana