VENICE CELEB SOIREE
In September, Clooney and Amal Alamuddin threw a star-studded wedding in the City of Light. The couple chose Belmond Hotel Cipriani for the rehearsal dinner and bachelor party, and Aman Canal Grande Venice for the bachelorette party and main event.
IDEA TO STEAL The island’s wooden water taxis ushered all of Clooney and Alamuddin’s guests between venues, but a grand exit deux via boat is an equally paparazziworthy moment.
REAL-WORLD PRICE Belmond Hotel Cipriani rooms from $766; reception menus from $235 per person. Aman Canal Grande Venice rooms from $1,473; site fees from $2,063.
Honeymoon And Wedding on Venice Photo Gallery
I spent the early 1950s serving an apprenticeship as a fitter and turner, deferring my two years of compulsory National Service until I was 21, but, bored with the tedium of my job and of my life in general, I decided – after some considerable thought – to join the army as a regular. This freed me from the dreaded National Service and allowed me to take advantage of a regular soldier’s higher wages, better postings and more exciting opportunities: in those days, the three arms of the British forces had postings in almost every corner of the globe. After my initial training and a few months assigned to a transport company in Blighty, I applied for a posting to Malaya, a decision that was to shape my destiny. For a young and adventurous man, free of the caution and fear that come only with age, life was, at first, very exciting. I made many friends while working with the Iban and Dyak scouts, jungle trackers from the elite Sarawak Rangers, who led many of our patrols and whose fathers had been fearsome, blowpipe-wielding headhunters in Borneo. They taught me many of their jungle skills and I learned other forms of survival technique with the now famous special forces. I could have done without the hard, miserable weeks spent soaking wet on secret patrols, hacking through jungle or thorn swamps infested with blood-sucking leeches, insects, giant spiders, snakes and armies of huge, biting red ants, searching for C.T.s (Communist Terrorists). I began seriously to wonder what I had done to deserve such misery and very quickly learnt not to volunteer for anything.
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