The Spice Girls' shelf life has finally expired.
What started out as plans for an 11-date comeback tour and inevitably morphed into an all-out, months-long globe-trotting phenomenon, concluded in Toronto Tuesday night, when the Girls wrapped up their Return of the Spice Girls World Tour.
"Our time is up…we've come to the end of the road…there are tears of both sadness and joy," the group collectively posted in a farewell message to their website Wednesday.
"Who would have though that our reunion could have turned out to be this amazing? It just shows what can grow out of an exciting thought, an idea, a hope, a dream. Yes, our reunion tour is proof that dreams do come true."
Not to mention proof of what a media- and business-friendly Svengali can do.
The girl-powered group—Victoria "Posh" Beckham, Melanie "Scary" Brown, Geri "Ginger" Halliwell, Emma "Baby" Bunton and Melanie "Sporty" Chisholm—confirmed the well-seasoned rumor that the Spices would be reuniting for the first time in 10 years back in June of last year, once again under the aggressively watchful eye of former manager Simon Fuller.
Plans for the handful of December one-off tour dates quickly gave way to the release of a new single, "Headlines," a greatest hits album and a rapidly expanding world tour.
Earlier this month, however, amid a flurry of mostly U.K.-generated headlines that hinted at discord within the Spice world, the girls announced that they would be cutting the tour short, backing out of previously announced dates in Australia, China, South Africa and Argentina, citing family commitments.
However, in the message to fans posted today, the Girls took time out to thank their loyal fanbase for sticking by them and coming out to support them after such a long absence.
"We have been lucky enough to have shared it with the most loyal fans in the world," they wrote. "Ten years on, you came back still wanting more…and it looks like we made some new friends along the way. You have inspired and ignited us with each show, the 47 that we performed, each time was amazing, and it is thanks to you."
While the Spice Girls offered no hints at whether a second reunion may someday take place—perhaps because Halliwell announced earlier this month that "this is the last time you will ever get to see the five Spices on stage as one"—they did implore the legions of Spice fans both old and new to continue fighting the good, girl-powered fight.
"We look to the future with hope and imagination and let Girl Power live on through all of you as it will continue in us and the future generations to come," they said.
"We hate goodbyes, but sadly the time has come to take our final bow, so maybe our song says it best: 'Goodbye my friend/ It's not the end/ So glad we made it/ Time will never ever change it.' "
And if there was any lingering doubt that the Spice Girls had achieved the world domination they no doubt sought back in the mid-90s, the peace-sign-throwing, Union Jack-loving group put it to rest at the conclusion letter, signing off, simply: "Mission accomplished."