All good things must come to an end, and this week has been a very good thing indeed. From the arrival of all the guests and the wedding party to the final goodbyes, this wedding has been an event of great joy. Sunday was one of those days that you have the morning after Christmas; everyone is relaxed and happy; you go through some of the presents and eat leftover turkey for breakfast. I have always liked those rare moments, and Sunday was one of those days.

We got Dave, Greg and Liz from the hotel around 11ish, a little tired, but not much the worse for wear. Dave and I did some post-wedding errands while Pam and the newlyweds came back to Al and Shelley’s. Joe and Aunt Jane, along with daughters Tessa and Sarah Jane showed up, as did Greg’s folks Vern and Holly. Dave and I got back in time for a lunch that Ros had whipped up: kashmiri pulao to go with some leftover chicken and salmon from the open house and the last of the cupcakes washed down with a lonely looking bottle of champagne. It was a happy little meal.

Greg and Liz opened their gifts while we ate and chatted about the wedding and the lovely opportunity it was to visit with family and friends. “The sun poured in like butterscotch” from the patio while we shared happy moments from the past week. After many hugs Jane and Joe had to leave for Toronto with Tessa and Sarah Jane, and then shortly after it was Dave and Amanda’s turn to catch a ride to the airport for their flight to Calgary; Dave with Liz’s guitar in tow. While Pam was doing that airport run Kim and Larry dropped by for a visit and stayed long enough to give us a chance to get caught up on their lives. Early in the morning I gave Greg and Liz a ride to the airport so they could catch the first of their flights to Hawaii. Hugging Liz goodbye was again a moment of sweet, almost unbearable joy. It was such a beautiful wedding and Liz looked so lovely and acted with such loving grace to all who attended her wedding that it quite overwhelmed me.

Then it was back to the house for a wee kip before beginning our last long goodbye to my cousin Ros. We wanted to show her a bit of the beauty of this corner of the world, so we took her south through St. Thomas where we used to live and then along Highway 3, past Aylmer and Simcoe before ending up in Fort Erie and the start of the Niagara River. I always like to approach the Falls from this direction; it is a lovely drive and there is a growing sense of anticipation that is not diminished in the least by the eventual sight of Niagara itself. We had lunch at a restaurant overlooking the Falls, and after drinking in the sights – including a double rainbow over the river – we wandered our way down to Niagara on the Lake for a cup of tea. It was great to have this last day with Ros, who travelled a great distance to be at our daughter’s wedding. We had sun practically the entire day and very little traffic as we made our way to Toronto airport and Ros’ flight back to England. After a final few hugs to end a very special and happy visit we were on our way back to London to wrap up our own time in Canada.