There was more than one reason that my 34th royal wedding in more than twenty years time was even more exciting than before. I can’t even remember that there has ever been such a huge gap between two weddings. There were also years in which I enjoyed seeing more than one wedding. My full list can be seen here.
That 33rd wedding was in July 2017 in Hannover, Germany. The couple in the meantime already having three children, and to complete the circle of four years, they were even present at this year’s wedding. Already at the time I think I wasn’t quite sure about my health, and within months it turned out it was not going well. As you might remember I turned out to have breast cancer, and 2018 I spent quite a lot of time going in and out of the hospital.
2019 was the year of recovery. I travelled to London and Scotland, but carefully planned my trips, so I wouldn’t get exhausted. And then Covid-19 came along … hardly any weddings, no travelling. I took up cycling through the countryside. Of course during all these years I followed royal and noble weddings on tv or online. But there were times that I really wondered if I would ever experience a wedding again.
Travelling the two hours to Amsterdam on a Sunday recently gave me some confidence again. Since March 2020 I have only travelled by train and bus here in the north when visiting my parents. For Amsterdam I still bought a first class ticket. But that would have been too expensive for the royal wedding that I had in mind already for some time. The train tickets weren’t that expensive either. Bückeburg however was more than four hours by train, so a bit of a challenge. But especially the trains in Germany turned out to be quiet, so it felt pretty safe and masks had to be worn anyway.
On 8 October 2021 I took the train to Minden, a place about 5-10 minutes by train from Bückeburg. All hotels in Bückeburg were fully booked, and it turned out my hotel in Minden was almost next to the railway station. As I arrived somewhere late in the afternoon I decided to discover part of Minden and was so tired afterwards that I skipped the evening party in Bückeburg. Before I left on Sunday I walked around in Minden once more. The weather was especially cold in the early morning, but rather nice otherwise.
So on Saturday 9 October 2021 I finally ended up at my 34th royal wedding. Media and guests were all vaccinated and tested, but I wore a mask anyway part of the time to be sure to stay safe. Not much distance was possible, and I ended up near the red carpet which was a real treat. I met nice people, saw most of what I wanted to see. I went home fully satisfied … and I can’t wait for the next wedding, although I still have no idea what that might be. Weddings in the north of Germany and the Netherlands are unfortunately quite rare.
I think it was my fourth visit to Bückeburg after 2007 (second wedding of the same groom), 2016 and 2017. Bückeburg is a lovely small town with a very nice centre, that includes the palace and the park. I thoroughly enjoyed my new visit and I could still imagine coming back here for another event: either the wedding of the hereditary prince or a Landpartie or Christmas market. It is just too far for a day trip, but for a long weekend it is possible.