Perhaps unsurprisingly, that's not the case. But things are slowly and steadily turning back to positive.
On Thursday morning I got a lift to Shopmobility, who are the nearest vendors trained and approved to carry out work on e-motion wheels. They took the tyre off and showed me the state of the inner-tube (I felt quite embarrassed) and they've ordered in new ones for me. Several friends encouraged me to try bike shops, or order online and do my own inner-tube replacements, but I'm not that keen to invalidate the warranty and insurance just to see if I can save £2 or get it done a day sooner - besides, Shopmobility schemes are worth supporting. I should be whizzing around again some time next week.
A big thing that went well is that I managed to get some affordable coloured envelopes online (from Ideal Envelopes, if anyone's wondering). I ordered them late Wednesday night, they arrived on Friday morning. I spent much of Friday writing out addresses in my Very Best Good Handwriting, and by the time Steve and I went to bed, all but one of them (waiting on a new address) was stamped, sealed, and ready to go. There was a little pang of frustration when I remembered I couldn't just trundle out to the post office with Steve (he's hurt his back and can't push the manual wheelchair either) but instead we drove around to several different post offices until we found one with wobbling-distance parking outside. UK envelopes in the box, overseas envelopes weighed and stamped for airmail by the post office clerk, and then as we went back to the car, a Royal Mail van pulled up to collect. So hopefully soon we'll start getting RSVPs!
Meanwhile, friends on Twitter and on other forums have provided a number of balloon company recommendations, so I've been phoning and emailing to try and get more quotes, and have booked an appointment to see one company next week. Hopefully I'll get something sorted out fairly soon and then everything weddingy will be right back on schedule.
Unfortunately I'm having the sort of day where being a passenger on a drive to a post office this morning wore me right out for the day - I spent most of the afternoon asleep and I'm still in bed typing this. It is therefore with a slight feeling of shame and a huge amount of gratitude that I say thank you to the protesters who marched in London today, including several of the Where's The Benefit posse. I only hope that a difference can still be made. As DavidG put it:
It’s quite simple, Mr. Milliband, we want an alternative strategy. If cuts must be made, we don’t want them to be targeted at those least able to bear them. And that is where the Labour Party is failing us. It was a Labour government that introduced ESA and ATOS screening, it was the Labour government that stood hand in hand with the Heil, the Scum and the Vexpress in demonising those of us on IB and ESA as fraudulent scroungers and under your leadership it is the Labour Party in opposition that is still supporting those policies.
People who voted for the Conservatives knew exactly what kind of ideology they were voting for and are probably very pleased about the cuts that are being made to services for poor people, disabled people, disadvantaged people, young people, and People Who Simply Aren't Our Sort Of People, but let's not pretend that Labour were or would be any better. Our political system is supposed to provide a formal means of opposition within the political system and I think the biggest motivating factor in all these protests is that meaningful opposition, carried out on our behalf by those who are supposed to represent us, is failing to take place as MPs scramble for a slice of the power pie and focus on relaxing the rules and increasing the spend on their own benefits.