The honeymoon from hell!

This morning I received a call from a close friend whose daughter is being married shortly. My girlfriend wanted someone to  listen to her because she felt she was going completely crazy over  the wedding plans. We chatted for a while and she mentioned  I seldom mention my wedding or for that matter, she had never heard about my honeymoon.There are good reasons for that!!!!!!!!!!

In the months leading up to our wedding, I had been seriously ill in hospital, had several surgeries and was only discharged from hospital about 3 days prior to the wedding. We had always wanted a small, intimate affair  but gave in to the wishes of my parents  and so it became a full scale event, just on 400 guests.! A far cry from the 20-30 we had originally planned. I suppose when you come from a very large family/extended family, that is to be expected.

I won’t go into the specifics too much and although the food, ambiance and ceremony were lovely, it was marred by my mother -in-law, doing a head count at the reception dinner and making it her business to inform us that there was a marked discrepancy between guests and gifts received. Who cared?? It was a day to relax with friends and celebrate.As the night wore on, there was problem after problem and the final straw was being locked out of our wedding night accommodation for most of the night( due to our late arrival).

Unknown to me until the wedding day, my new husband had booked a Pacific cruise for our honeymoon. We had organised to go up the coast for a few days and take a flat but he wanted to spoil me and give me a trip to remember and recuperate from the months in hospital. Such a lovely and very expensive gesture $6000.00 for 14 days and that was 1979!The brochures looked wonderful; romantic stateroom, en-suite, living area , etc.he had initially wanted to book our trip on P&O but the next cruise was a full week after the wedding, so he booked on a supposedly luxury Russian ship, which departed the day after the wedding.

We were typical newly weds, full of excitement and eager to  leave for the honeymoon. We flew to Sydney and took a cab to the dock address provided. Was that it, the ship of our dreams? I have  mention that we did not embark from the regular embarkation point( Circular Quay) but a tin shed, more like a large cattle  enclosure. Seated at a ‘card table’  on the dock, were two women who took our tickets and directed us to the  small, old and rusty ship, desperately in need of a good paint job! We looked at each other in disbelief  as we were taken to our cabin, then my husband lost it. I had never see him so angry and he stormed out of the cabin to find someone in charge. After ten minutes or so, an officer arrived and asked that I accompany him to restrain my husband as he was furious and arguing with one of the executive officers about our cabin( not the queen size bed and luxurious amenities but two tiny single beds and a lavatory with a shower over head- that was it, no storage , mirror , etc). Finally to end the spectacle, the officer relinquished his own cabin and we installed ourselves there. At least it was larger than a shoe box!

I will summarise the rest of the honeymoon from hell.Two days out of Sydney, the ship ran out of fresh food, we went through not one but two cyclones, once in the middle of the night, a submarine pulled up aside and crew  from the ship went on board and people from the submarine boarded the ship, the hi tech cinema(as per brochures) was a cushion thrown on the floor of the dining room and and old super 8 movie projector and just when we thought it could not get worse, the ship was quarantined in Sydney Harbour on our return due to an outbreak of gastro on board.

Unfortunately, we could not have any of our money refunded  or the matters addressed as Austalia had ceased to trade with Russia because of the invasion on Afganistan while we were at sea. If it were not so bad, it would have been comical..

My friend was laughing so hard as I told her all this and said that in comparison, her wedding woes were nothing. I would be interested to hear about others’ wedding and honeymoon experiences- good and not so good and I will share them here!


16 thoughts on “The honeymoon from hell!

  1. Maureen, thanks for sharing this amazing story! Isn’t it amazing how such a surprisingly horrible situation–especially given the tremendously high expectations–can now be revisited in this way.

  2. Thanks Pastor Dan,
    Oh yes, I can have a good laugh about it now but at the time we were captives for over 2 weeks LOL 🙂

  3. What a “Honeymoon from Hell”. Indeed it sounds almost like it.

    Will be a great Tea-Time Story to share.


  4. Hi Jaded,
    Thanks for your comment. I did not mention half of the dramas that occurred on the cruise!
    Best wishes

  5. Hi Mal,
    Thanks for commenting. I could write a book about that trip(and the wedding too) but I don’t want to drive readers away lol.
    Best wishes

  6. Hi Maureenj!

    Nice to have you onboard. I read your story with your new husband and makes me ever more curious about this perfect couple.

    Of course, a pic says a thousand words. 😉

    It’s always great to befriend a gorgeous blogger.


  7. Hi Scope,
    Thanks for your comment. It’s nice to “meet ” you at last. WE seem to run into each other often.
    Best wishes and have a good week end.

  8. Oh my… and to think that some people believe they have a right to complain about what happened to them!!

    We booked a room at the local Howard Johnsons since we were planning to drive out of town the next day. Upon arrival, we discovered that our room, though reserved months before, had been given away! The room they gave us had filthy carpet, smelled like smoke and the air conditioning was broken (it was July). Later we found out why there were hoards of little girls running and screaming through the halls – the place had been booked for a Little Miss Something or other pageant! The next morning we headed to an amusement park in Kansas City (hey, we were on a budget OK?), where the car promptly died as we exited the interstate. Other than that, it was a totally forgettable trip. With a beginning like that I guess it’s no surprise that we ended up in divorce court years later!

  9. Hi Naturemyway,
    Thanks for your comment.
    What a start to married life for you too! I am so pleased you have shared it here, Now we can all look back and have a good laugh at our misfortunes but at the time they weren’t so amusing.
    Best wishes

  10. That was some story Maureen. You poor thing. These sorts of things happen when we’re young and haven’t learned to detect the signs of a bad hustle (those glossy brochures promising heaven). I am now on the edge of my seat awaiting the sequel.

  11. Thank you for your comment James. You are right, we were young and very naive. I want everyone with an interesting wedding/ honeymoon to share it with us here 🙂

  12. that is one heck of a story! my gosh!

    for my first, we had a smallish outdoor wedding in a park (under 100 people) followed by a week long backpack trip in the sierras where the worst thing that happened was getting briefly lost in the sense we lost the trail but were still headed in the right direction amid mosquitoes.

    for my second, we were married at my grandmother’s house and about 75 people and we had an overnight away at a lovely b&b in cambria by the ocean then went to work then a month later took a 10 day road trip in to the cascades of oregon where the worst thing that happened is a trail i wanted to hike had too much snow on it…

    i’m certainly not complaining about not having a more interesting story!

  13. Hi Gwendolyn,
    I am glad for you that you have such pleasant memories. Thank you so much for taking the time to share them with us here:)

  14. Hi Maureen, I managed to find you by bumping you again: is your avatar deliberately not linked to your site? It means if anyone wants to respond to a comment of yours on their site, they can’t unless (unlike me) they’re brilliant enough to think of typing maureenj.wordpress!
    Your honeymoon was something else: do we assume that it brought you and your husband together, rather than destroying your marriage?

  15. Hi there 94stanger,
    I did not know that my avatar was not linked. Thanks for bringing that to my attention. 🙂
    We have been married for nearly 30 years!

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