The Grafton Cup, it's more than just a day at the races.
It's an institution, it's a tradition.
I can recall as a youngster, that there were a few occasions that my mother would dress my brother and I in our very best and take us along to the running of the Cup.
Back then, things were civilised, Ladies dressed like ladies and Gents wore suits and ties and carried the form guide in the breast pocket of their jackets.
We would picnic on the lawns and watch the horses.
Somewhere between the 80's and the 00's things went to shit. Girls dressed like whores and Boys wore jeans and T-shirts, style became completely lost. I can safely say I have never worn a dress above my knees to the races, I can not say the same for others.
There were a few years between say 2000 and 2004 where my recollections of the Cup are somewhat hazy, I don't remember seeing horses and the memories end with my friends and I dancing shoeless on tables in local bars, we were not particularly lady-like.
I have tried to make it to the Cup over the years since my children were born, but usually not making too much effort, just throwing together an outfit and tagging along with friends on the day.
This year was a little different.
It was the 100th running of the Cup. NOT the 100th year of it's running as one local business is currently displaying on their window ... * headdesk * Grafton Travel; you fail.
The Grafton Cup was first run in 1910, with Gosine leading the pack to the post in a glorious victory.
However, the Cup was not run in 1942, 1943, 1944 and 1945 due to World War II, clearly the country was too preoccupied to be bother with the triviality of a little horse race, and rightfully so I say.
A very kind invitation from a very generous Gentleman, made this year a little more special.
I was invited to attend the Cup by the Mr and we were graciously accompanied by the 2012 Best Dressed Lady and the soon to be 2013 Best Dressed Vintage Mr.
This was big! I needed an outfit worthy of Miss Best Dressed's company.
I pulled together a 1920' Gatsby inspired outfit, from various stores in the Northern Rivers, I added some vintage and some new sparkly jewels and some finger waves and I was ready to go.
I assisted the Mr with the purchase of a velvet dinner jacket and paisley tie. I think we looked smashing.
None of this however, should distract from the actual purpose of the day; the Cup. I excitedly stood pressed between the fence and the Mr's chest as Mr O'Ceirin galloped to victory in the big race.
I enjoyed the day, but the evening was wonderful also. Rather than fight with the crowds for a table in Grafton, we stole away to Châteaux Alexander in Coffs Harbour.
We dined at Amalfi's a delightful little Italian restaurant then retreated to our mountain top hideaway, with its 240 degree views of the Pacific Ocean.
Such a perfect day. Thank you Grafton Cup, and Thank you Mr x