It's over! And wasn't it wonderful. But first, be advised, spoilers to follow if you haven't seen the finale of "Downton Abbey" yet.
The last episode finally brought Cousin Matthew and Lady Mary together in a magical snowy scene outside Downton Abbey as he got down on his knee and asked her to marry him.
What will we do without our Sunday nights at "Downton Abbey." I know many people who will miss it, including myself. I will miss those dinners around the dining room table with the family dressed in formal attire, the men in white tie and the women in gowns. Can you imagine getting dressed up like that every night for dinner in your own home?
I will miss the exquisite library with its leather bound books where so many great scenes happened, including the exchange of Christmas presents in the season finale. This was the room where Lord Grantham was endlessly working at his desk or reading the paper and Mr. Carson or Mrs. Hughes were forever popping in to inform his lordship of some new crisis among the staff or on the estate.
I will miss Lady Mary and her complicated personality. She had that icy aristocratic demeanor in the beginning of the show (and maybe it never completely left her), but as the series went along the depths of her character were revealed and we ended up understanding her better and liking her more.
And oh, the anguish and frustration of the star-crossed romance between Cousin Matthew and Lady Mary. It's resolution was a glorious moment.
I will miss the servants such as Thomas and Mr. Bates and their complicated relationships with the Crawleys. Thomas, who was found to be a thief, is later forgiven after being wounded in the war and is welcomed back to the house. Lord Grantham and the family seem to feel a responsibility towards him and the other servants. We feel that the Crawleys will take care of the them forever.
I will miss Maggie Smith more than anybody else, because her memorable lines and verbal zingers were delicious and nobody could have played the Dowager Lady Grantham with greater confidence, humor and talent. She is one of England's greatest treasures.
I will miss the beautiful English countryside and the sumptuous costumes. Did anyone notice Lady Mary's lovely green hat in the shooting party scene?
I will miss the family dynamics of the show. There are, after all, two "families" that live at Downtown Abbey. Lord and Lady Grantham are the parent figures that preside upstairs and Mr. Carson and Mrs. Hughes are the "parents" downstairs. It was fascinating to watch all the interactions within both families.
I will miss the two villains, Thomas and O'Brien. They were so good at being evil. Though O'Brien's feelings of guilt eventually lead to some kindness and empathy in season two. And even Thomas had some sympathetic moments.
And oh, Mr. Bates, your silent suffering, dignity and selflessness will be missed.
I will miss the coming together of the Crawleys and the servants to support Mr. Bates.
And I will miss the Crawley sisters with all their hopes, dreams and jealousies.
Here is how one group is dealing with the loss of "Downton Abbey."
A friend snapped this photo of a flyer at a library in Vermont. A "Downton Abbey" support group will meet in the "cozy" reading room of a Vermont library. How fun! Costumes are optional. This could be the answer for all of us who loved the show. There is really nothing like a costume drama for escapist entertainment. Hopefully the wait won't be too long until season three. In the meantime, I need to find a good old-fashioned, sprawling English novel to read. Or maybe a marathon viewing of the excellent costume dramas by Merchant/ Ivory.
Can't wait for season three!
All photos of "Downton Abbey" via here