Maureen: Wedding Planning 101: Don't call her bridezilla...

Maureen: Wedding Planning 101: Don't call her bridezilla...

Maureen Hill is a regular columnist for Travel Weekly and works at Wessex World Travel, Gillingham, DorsetDon’t call her bridezilla

If I ever had any doubts that the Disney corporation really can make dreams come true, Allan Trinidad called in this week to dispel them.

Now repping for Collette Worldwide Holidays, it had been some time since we’d last seen him in this neck of the woods, so I was anxious to catch up.

Once he’d talked us through the special services offered by Collette, he let slip that he will be getting married in June to partner Laura whom he met when they were both working for Disney.

A quick run-down of the love story revealed that it started with a less-than-fairytale chat-up line.

"I asked her if she wanted a fag,” said Allan. Not so much Cinderella and Prince Charming as Lady and the Tramp, I think you’ll agree.”

Allan has been compensating in the romance stakes, however, by taking an active role in the planning of the wedding. He told me that the venue will be the same church where their four-year-old son, Carl, was baptised.

“We’ve been to the marriage lessons with the priest,” he told me, “but he skipped over the bits about family planning…”

It sounds as though Laura will be getting her happy ending in what promises to be something like a meeting of the United Nations as relations fly in from the Philippines, South Africa and other far-flung places.

“She certainly knows what she wants,” Allan said, “I made the mistake of calling her ‘bridezilla’ the other day.”

Whoops! I tried to reassure him that the comment would be forgotten and that it won’t resurface in every argument that erupts from now until they draw their pensions, but I must have sounded pretty unconvincing.

We moved swiftly on to the honeymoon which the couple plan to spend in San Francisco and Hawaii.

“One piece of advice,” I ventured, “don’t mention the bridezilla thing again. The Golden Gate Bridge is very high, and Alcatraz is just a short ride away.”

Not in pole position

Later on in the week, we saw North America Travel Service’s Jane Riddington, who fired us up with pictures of the fabulous luxury resort at Pelican Hill in Los Angeles.

Inspired by Italian architecture and Palladian style, the resort is designed to offer the ultimate in luxury, where housekeepers plump your pillows, a butler mixes your drinks and a driver is on standby with a Mercedes to take you to the beach, five minutes away.

The diversity of experiences on offer from NATS is part of the reason for its success. If the towelling bath robe and sun lounger aren’t for you, there are plenty more active vacation types.

I was particularly impressed by the cruise options, which included expeditions to the Arctic and North West passage, while the programme with Cruise West takes an up-close view of Alaska, sailing up what Jane described as the ‘nooks and crannies’ of secluded fjords.

I couldn’t help but wonder if she’d had a bit of trouble with nooks and crannies herself, as she was walking rather awkwardly. It took a little prompting, but she finally revealed that she was suffering the consequences of a little pole dancing, undertaken while on a hen weekend in Brighton.

“We all agreed to a lesson,” she explained, “it was supposed to be empowering but you have to get past the chafing first.”

I was full of admiration, but Jane tells me that her preferred pastime is chocolate making. She’d taken a course in Bristol and even made a beautiful box of chocolates for her mum on Mother’s Day.

“Your other half must be in seventh heaven,” I said, “with a pole-dancing chocolatier in the house.”

“He’d prefer it if my skills lay in the steak and ale pie-making department,” she replied.

Some men just don’t know when they’ve got it good!

Ronnie Dare RIP

Jane was on her way out when David Longmuir, business development manager of EFR Travel, popped in to tell us of the fantastic golfing holidays available from Elegant Golf Resorts, available from as little as £229 for five nights.

This is good news as far as independent agents are concerned as there aren’t too many agent-friendly golfing operators in the market place and the demand for this kind of activity break seems to grow exponentially.

Sadly, David imparted the news of the death of Ronnie Dare. Ronnie worked for JAL and also for ABTA Magazine; he could light up a room and his love of life was infectious. Our sincere condolences to his family and friends.
Maureen Hill works at Travel Angels in Gillingham, Dorset


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