image: the entrance to the not-a-fete

The British Embassy in Luxembourg held an open day yesterday, at the ambassador’s residence. The residence not part of the embassy complex itself; it’s near the Luxembourg parliament and Grand Ducal palace, overlooking the Petrusse valley park. It is a beautiful building beautifully placed.

People with a detailed knowledge of social events may notice that it coincided with a royal wedding. This, actually, was no coincidence. The televised marriage was relayed here. Indeed, at the appropriate moment, the hosts kindly offered those attending champagne and cake in celebration.

I have to admit I did have a surprise when I realised that I’d got the name of the bride wrong, and this wasn’t a crafty political marriage—it turned out the woman I thought was the bride was in Moscow meeting President Putin. Well, Markle does sound like Merkel.

It was such a beautiful summer’s day that the event felt more than a little like a village fête, except there was no tombola, nor a beer tent full of elderly farmers getting smashed at 10am. Of course, a real fête would have been rained off at the last minute: here, though, beyond the occasional cloud, the weather stayed perfect the whole day. The garden was shaded by a couple of huge old trees, making it a near perfect location even for those, like me, who are sensitive to the sun.

I was there as an artist, exhibiting my photos, and taking the opportunity to exhibit some poetry too. The guests were there for the social and cultural occasion, not for the arts: even so, all of us artists achieved something, I believe. I covered my costs, which wasn’t so difficult given I was an invited guest rather than a paying customer. Actually, I did sell some poetry, and, more interestingly, made a contact which I suspect might result in some gigs.

Unsurprisingly, I took some snaps.

Overall, it was a most enjoyable day. I thank those working at the embassy for their work in pulling this off successfully.