Earlier this summer, I did another wedding in the Cotswolds area and my memories were being refreshed on the drive back in Wales that I mentioned some weeks ago that we called ‘Top Gear Challenge’.
I am so glad that before we arrive on the wedding day, we always perform what we call a pre-run of the route we will be taking. Typically, this would be from our base at Royal Wootton Bassett to the brides parents house, then with the bride and father to the church or ceremony venue, and then finally to the reception venue.
So, the week before the wedding I did that in our 3 year old Jaguar XFS, and the Sat Nav said the infamous ‘you have arrived at your destination’, I arrived, but the cottage and road was not visible anywhere. Thankfully a postman arrived at that point, so I asked and he put me right. Sorted! Everything else on the pre-run trip went fine, so we were all set for the wedding.
The day came, so I started the S Type, the chosen Jaguar for the wedding, with my wife and myself to go to the ‘pre-location’ venue, where, having done the distance to the area we are picking up the bride, we then clean the car again and dressed it with bows and ribbons. This makes sure the bride has a pristine car even though we travel a distance to her.
Before we set off, I put the post code into the Sat Nav for the ceremony venue which was also the reception venue, but the Sat Nav did not recognise the code.
Thankfully, with my wife looking after my phone, we used ‘Maps’ and set off to the venue and when there, I added the location as a ‘Favourite’. We were all set.
While I was doing the actual journey to the venue with the bride and father, who were delightful, they mentioned to me about going up a hill on a track parallel to the venue, so they could have some photos taken there after the ceremony with the bride and groom. Knowing the venue, I was aware of track, but hadn’t been on it before. When I arrived at the venue, the track was in the distance, and it didn’t look too much of a challenge, so I agreed.
The time came when the bride and groom as well as the maid of honour were in the car and I drove along the track and up the hill. However, the track had grass growing in the middle meaning that my car was scrapping on the mud and grass! As the incline got steeper, I was hoping and praying all the time that my wheels did not spin, especially as the guests were present! Thankfully, we arrived at the top of the hill and the bridal party had their photos taken.
Then, to come down again, this meant that I had to take it even more carefully and balance my wheels on the central grass ‘track’ and the verge to avoid scraping my under carriage again. My wheels began to slip but I carefully guided the car down and we were safe again.
Another satisfied bride and groom having once again gone the extra mile. I think I may be more careful about accepting these unofficial ‘Top Gear Challenges’ in future though!