Thursday, 6 March 2014

The Cambridges holiday in the Maldives + This Week's Royal News

Hello-Hello, we hope you're having a terrific week!

We have several interesting stories and updates to share with you today, beginning with news William and Kate arrived in the Maldives at 9.45 this morning via a British Airways flight for a week long holiday. The surprise trip comes just weeks before the couple embark on a three-week-tour of Australia and New Zealand with Prince George. The couple elected not to take their son with them and it has been reported he's staying with the Middleton family in Bucklebury.

Wikipedia

According to news outlets in the Maldives, the Cambridges are staying at a newly opened private resort in the northern part of the Maldives. The area hosts a selection of luxurious spa resorts with hotels and villas.

Trip Advisor

Royal reporter Richard Palmer shared this via Twitter.

Richard Palmer Twitter Feed

The vacation has been described as a "bad move" on William and Kate's part. Given the fact there's been only a handful of engagements this year another holiday (Kate recently went to Mustique and William to Spain on a hunting trip) seems a very unexpected choice for the royal couple. If there had been even a couple of engagements recently, it may have deterred some of the negative headlines they will no doubt receive. Of course, it's all about balance and finding a happy medium between a private life and their public role.

We'll update if news and/or photos emerge.

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In other news, Kensington Palace has confirmed The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will visit the 1st Battalion Irish Guards at the St. Patrick's Day Parade at Mons Barracks, Aldershot. The event marks William and Kate's first joint engagement this year. William will attend as colonel of the regiment and Kate will present the traditional sprigs of shamrock to officers and guardsmen.


This will mark the third consecutive year the Duchess has presented shamrock, a tradition previously kept by The Queen Mother. In 2012 and 2013 Kate chose a green Emilia Wickstead coat dress. Will it have a third outing, or will she opt for something new? It is the only engagement pencilled in for Kate this month.

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What else has Kate been up to this week? Her Royal Highness was a guest at the farewell party for Sir Marcus Setchell, The Queen's surgeon-gynaecologist who delivered Prince George last July at the Lindo Wing of St. Mary's Hospital, Paddington. The doctor was appointed Knight Commander of the Royal Victorian Order shortly after George's birth.


The party, which took place at the Hyde Park Hilton, doubled as fundraiser for the Wellbeing of Women, an organisation which works towards improving the health of women and babies across the UK. No photos emerged from the event, nor details about Kate's outfit, however, I suspect a smart black dress would have been an excellent choice. It was lovely to hear Kate supported Sir Marcus and of course, Wellbeing of Women, an incredibly worthy organisation. Perhaps one Kate might work with in the future?


There was an interesting story in the Mail Online yesterday, a purported exclusive by Sebastian Shakespeare headlined 'After that £1m refit Kate hates the colour scheme':

'Despite spending more than £1 million of taxpayers' money on making their Kensington Palace home fit for two future kings, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are embarking on yet another programme of decoration.
 Kate, is understood to have sought help from a flamboyant designer after becoming dissatisfied with the colour scheme she planned while pregnant. She tried to do the revamp cheaply with the builders who did the kitchen, and she got Dulux paints to match the Farrow & Ball colour palette to save money, I'm told. But she wasn't happy with the result, and one room came out with a horrible, unexpected purple tinge. She's blaming it on her hormones before the birth.'

I quietly smiled to myself upon reading about the "purple tinge". Who hasn't had a home d├ęcor disaster or two? I vividly recall the living room in my parents home was redecorated one summer whilst we were away. Upon returning the neural palette we were used too had been replaced by a forest green and burnt orange colour scheme. Needless to say the paintbrushes were out within hours. Even the royals have situations like this. Decorating twenty-one rooms is no mean feat, even for those with sublime taste.

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Our last portion of today's post focuses on recent tour headlines. Following the official announcement of the Cambridges' tour itinerary, headlines emerged reporting The King of the Maori people has refused to meet the royal couple during their tour of New Zealand next month. Prince William was due to meet King Tuheitia, who ascended to the Maori throne in 2006, at his official residence, but separate engagements for the couple scuppered plans.


More from the BBC story:

'His office said the King was "not some carnival act to be rolled out at the beck and call of anyone". A statement from his office said that while he had "agonised" over the decision, the monarch was not prepared to meet the royal couple for only 90 minutes.
 It blamed "faceless bureaucrats" for a "grave error in judgement" and said the full reasons for the refusal were conveyed to the royal couple in a letter several weeks ago. The statement added, "The King wanted to give his best to the couple to reflect their status, he was being prevented from doing that."'

Moving on, several readers have been in touch enquiring about the possibility of reading the official press release from Kensington Palace regarding the tour. It is available in full on William and Kate's official website with a detailed look at their schedule and remarks by William's private secretary Miguel Head. Below we share a segment:

'The party is similar in size to recent overseas visits undertaken by Their Royal Highnesses. It consists of me and the Duchess's Private Secretary, Rebecca Deacon, three press officers, a Tour Secretary, a Personal Assistant, a Hairdresser and an Orderly to help manage the logistics. Sir David Manning will also accompany Their Royal Highnesses throughout. A new addition to the party is, of course, Prince George’s nanny. 
 The Duke and Duchess will travel from London to Australia by scheduled flights, and onto New Zealand courtesy of the Royal New Zealand Air Force. Once in New Zealand, the RNZAF will very kindly transport the royal party around the country. The flight from Wellington to Sydney will be provided by the Royal Australian Air Force and, similarly, all flights in-country will be with the RAAF. The return flight to London will again be on a scheduled airline. 
It goes without saying that The Duke and Duchess are hugely grateful for the support of both air forces in helping to deliver the tour. On behalf of Their Royal Highnesses, and their Household, I should also like to thank, if I may, the Governors-General and Prime Ministers of New Zealand and Australia, who have been immensely kind in the guidance and support they have given thus far. 
Taking a nine-month-old on a Royal tour is not a first, but it has not happened in this Royal Family’s context for many, many years, so there has been much to think about – as any new parent travelling long distance will recognise! 
In summary, if I might, this visit will cover off much territory and will allow Their Royal Highnesses to do what they wanted to do above all else: meet New Zealanders and Australians – in Wellington, Blenheim, Auckland, Hamilton, Cambridge, Dunedin, Queenstown, Christchurch; then Sydney, Brisbane, the Adelaide area, Uluru and Canberra – and this list is not even exhaustive.  There is no hiding the enthusiasm for this visit by both The Duke and The Duchess.

Naturally, there's much excitement in New Zealand and Australia as preparations are underway to welcome the royal couple. New Zealand's official issuer of commemorative coins has designed a Royal Visit 2014 Silver Proof Coin. The $139 (NZD) pieces feature William, Kate and George in front of Government House, Wellington.

New Zealand Coins

Finally, a look at this week's tour-themed cover of Hello! Magazine.

Hello! Magazine

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts on this week's royal stories. We'll be back with more tour style possibilities next. :)

426 comments:

  1. If indeed the holiday to the Maldives is true I'm at a loss for words.

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    1. Me too. It would have been different if we knew a little more about how she was spending her days since Christmas. I want to be hopeful we get to hear that she was doing private visits to charaities or something like that...

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    2. Ditto. Actually, no, I have plenty to say.

      I am made fun of at work because I am such an Anglophile and mimic everything Kate, but this is getting ridiculous. Even I am saying, enough is enough. Fine, take time off to spend time with George, but you don't have to go on an exotic vacation every 6 weeks. Really?! Prince William should be at home studying (or pretending to be) and Kate should be doing at the minimum, 1 public event per week. That would be totally reasonable, giving her baby-bonding time. But she's averaging 1 per month. They've almost taken more vacations than they've done appearances!

      For the Royal Family, appearance is EVERYTHING because that is all that they have. They have to prove that the institution is still valid and taking exotic beach holidays every 6 weeks isn't going to cut it. Especially when the eyes of NZ and Australia are on them (two places that can be pro-republic). Let's face it, the only reason that they have a royal family is because the people (their subjects) allow it. So why are they insulting their subjects this way? I just don't get it. Major turn off.

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    3. We as fans are not entitled to know what goes on in their personal lives.

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    4. Hi Lynn from Ca.,

      I too am (was) an Anglophile and love to copy Kate's style, much to the amusement of my family and friends. But, wow, I am having a hard time lately explaining why I like(d) her so much.

      When William and Kate gave their engagement interview, I was so thrilled to hear how she was wanting to work hard and make a difference. I feel like we are still waiting for that to happen.

      I have come to realize that Kate really has no ambition in life, other than being with William. We saw that while they were dating, she built her life completely around William and his wants and needs. The only time she struck out on her own was when they briefly broke up and she joined the rowing team. But, as soon as they got back together she dropped it like a hot rock, quit her job and waited for him to call.

      I guess I am just venting some frustration at Kate. She could have so many opportunities to truly make a difference, to shine a little light on wonderful causes, to show the world that being of service and helping others is a truly noble endeavor but all she is showing us is her awesome ability to wear wonderful clothes and jewelry and not all the often I might add. It's so sad to see her waste these opportunities

      All that being said, I will probably still look forward to seeing what she will wear on the next tour but my regard for her (and William) is really fading.

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    6. I also was a fan of Kate. I was quite very big fan of hers. But that instantly was killed in me when they went to holiday in Mustique last year. That happened after 3 month we barely caught sight of her. Then I understood several things:
      -she (they) don't care in the least way for us, her followers
      -I had a huge dissapointment in myself also, bacause I can't have Kate or anyone else brighten my day, I have to do it myself. It probably is a big burden for her to bright half of the world's life, she can't do it, nor she should.
      -I was so interested in her, because she gave out so little of her, I thaught it was a lot in hinding, but I begin to think, she doesn't give us more, because that is all she is.
      By having this big dissapointment in myself I have saved myself from a lot of agony when waiting for her to appear.
      Since then I still follow her lightly, waiting to regain my interest in her, but I started to follow other royal families also - to keep myself a little entertained and to learn their history.
      It was interesting to see how other Kate followers slowly went through the same things and thaughts.
      I wish Charlotte and all of you a nice day!
      Emese

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    7. Maybe Charles warned William to find a nice submissive wife. I share the opinion of all those who are frustrated at Kate's wasting of her platform. There are so many things I would like to achieve, things aimed at bettering the world - but I am a wage earner and after the hours are clocked in there just ain't much in the way of time or resources. Of course she is free to do what she wants, but certainly I would not say that she is anybody to be admired. Einstein said something about the point of living being to be in the service of mankind. Kate's attitude to life I would say is quite shameful. William also. I really am irritated at his righteous wildlife-poaching stance - he makes the argument simplistic and also ethnocentric and anthropocentic. He talks about needing these animals to be around for our children, as if they (the animals) are some kind of sideshow exhibit for our delight, rather than creatures who exist in their own right. Also he does not address the social, cultural, and economic complexities that create the conditions for poaching - he just points the finger at poachers as criminals. Easy for him to do when he lives a luxurious life. Hard to sympathize with his desire to save animals so that he may have the pleasure of ogling them while on safari.

      Back to Kate - seriously, wtf! I think a lot of us were charmed by her seeming normalcy and classic style. But she is coming off as a submissive, uninspiring socialite.

      Sigh

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    8. Strong argument about the poaching. William has indeed a very universalistic perspective on that matter.

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    9. Portia from Chicago7 March 2014 at 15:50

      Boston - love your post ! Thank you.

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    10. bluhare in Washington State7 March 2014 at 17:19

      Boston, I think I love you. You've nailed my feelings as well.

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    11. Portia and Bluhare:

      :) I often enjoy your comments, but rarely post here myself. I have a feminism-minded fascination with Kate, and all conversation surrounding her. Her "story" is so curious - who is she?! Simple girl / wealthy snob / elite but dull / shy-smart and frustrated....?! It's a mystery.

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  2. It is hard to pick colors and particularly so from small swatches. And I would imagine that the amount of sun would play into it depending on the time of year it was selected. I had about ten colors of taupe, greige, mocha, chestnut, etc. on my wall some time back. It looked like Joseph's coat! And I didn't have hormones as an excuse. I am just picky about colors. I painted it one shade and then called in the painter to do another! ;-)

    I hope they have a marvelous time on their trip. I wish they were coming to Florida!

    xo

    Sheila

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    1. Me too Sheila- I wish they were coming to Florida too!

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  3. I feel a bit shocked to read that the royal couple left for a holiday WITHOUT the baby.
    Having a grandchild of the same age myself, I know how important the presence of the mother is for the baby every single day!
    Hoping, that there is just an error on the news.

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    1. I don't see any problem at leaving a baby alone for a few days. They have to relax a little. My parents did it with me, and I don't have any trauma or something similiar, thanks for asking!!! PG is grown enough to be left alone (with his nanny) a few days.
      Althought I have to admit I was surprised to read they're on holiday. I really like Kte and think she deserve it, but not now, when she'd barely made public appearences since the new year.

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  4. I must admit that this was not the wisest move. Perhaps it would have been a little less controversial after their tour, or if Kate had passed on Mustique when William wasn't able to go and they planned this vacation instead.

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    1. I agree 100% royalfan! I think it's both this trip's proximity to Kate's family trip to Mustique, and William's education (which was a bit controversial on the first place), which he is interrupting in order to enjoy this holiday. Maybe they were hoping that the trip had remained private and not made public? It gives us, though, some insight on what life is, behind the curtains, for William and Kate. Not always the solidary, anthropologic, devoted image we see of them in official appearances.

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    2. bluhare in Washington State7 March 2014 at 17:20

      After their tour would probably have created some discussion, but not like this. These two really are eating their cake.

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  5. I can see how the vacation will not be viewed well. Maybe it is an indication that they will have a super busy spring/summer and we will see lots of them out and about. Hopefully it is not just wishful thinking on my part. I do see how with the lack of engagements, it is not the best idea from a PR perspective. I'm beginning to think the Royal Family never thinks about public reaction. They seem to make very odd choices.

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    1. carrie from the rockies7 March 2014 at 02:38

      I agree. They don't take the public into consideration they plan things. I think that's their way of trying to maintain normality; by pretending the public isn't watching.

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    2. bluhare in Washington State7 March 2014 at 17:23

      I think the Royal Family does care about public opinion. The Queen and Charles hopefully pay a lot of attention. If they aren't, they should. Charles especially. His career especially depends on public goodwill.

      Perhaps William and Kate don't think it matters right now because (a) William's a bit away from the throne, (b) Kate ranks high in public opinion polls on who people like in the RF, and (c) they produced George. Well, all that's true, but it will be interesting to see what those same polls say if this continues.

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  6. I am a really big fan of Kate and the Royals. But another holiday? I would have understood this if it came after their tour of new zealand and australia, but so i think it's a really bad choice they made... so far they holidayed more than they carried out official engagements... in my opinion not balanced well! :((

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    1. I love William and Kate too but really? How can they justify this?

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    2. Like another user here writed, i am having a bit of a tough time latetly, because it is so hard to explain why they are important and necessary in the sense of why we need a royal family.. i really love them and think they are charming people, but it is really getting more and more to me, that they are more and more lazy

      Best wishes

      Lili from austria

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  7. they need new PR people HOW CAN THEY TAKE ANOTHER VACATION??? there life is a vacation...please i BEG someone try and defend them now

    LAZY LAZY LAZY

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  8. Portia from Chicago6 March 2014 at 21:22

    Oh dear - so it is true. What a life. Seriously, just.. what a life.

    And I don't blame them for being opportunistic about everything - after all the public is pretty easily brainwashed and quite forgetful. They know that they will come back, go to Australia, dangle the baby in front of people and all will be forgiven. Like it has been in the past.

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    1. I think you are 100% correct, Portia. They know people might be annoyed at the idea now, but they count on the short memory of the public and do it anyways. Starting to get a touch disenchanted with the pair.

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    2. I think its good for us, as hard core fans, to be disenchanted. Its better to be see them with open eyes. I to am not surprised they went on vacation. This is what they did last yearw. But for a week and not taking Georgie I am surprised. We will fall back in love w them soon enough.

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    3. I meant to say, I am not surprised that they went on Vacation.

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  9. OMG, this holiday is really not a smart move. I cannot imagine that TRH's office (and probably W and K themselves) does not read the criticism there is lately. Why don't they see this is not a smart move?

    Honestly, I think that it is a good idea that W and K start doing more engagements. The more charities the Royal Family can help, the better. I know they are not first in line to the throne, but if the people wish they do more engagements, I think they should do so. Honestly, you can combine 2-3 engagements a week and be a good mother. There is not a Duchess on/off mode, you are a Duchess all the time. Kate dated William fur such a long time, she knew what was coming.

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  10. I don't criticize them at all for taking another vacation. If I were them,I would do the same thing.

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  11. I see absolutely nothing wrong with them going on Holday. Why all the criticism??? Their private life is none of our business. There generate sooooooo much good will and revenue for the country and beyond. Can't we just accept that ....admire them...and stop the negativity. I was always taught that people who criticize others are just jealous and need to belittle to feel better. Besides you are hearing only a portion of the story...from the press........always more to a story.
    Hope they are having a wonderful time!!!!!

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    1. Yes but their work is paid for by public money, and we haven't seen much work recently. And as one tweeter said, isn't William supposed to be doing a course at Cambridge at the moment? I understand they may be working behind the scenes, but surely they have a duty to demonstrate they are earning their way. If someone in your office only turned up half the time, you'd ask yourself what on earth they were doing. PR is a bit part of the royal job, and they need to be better at it. I like Kate, she is very pretty, but I am leaning more and more towards republicanism.

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    2. The good will and revenue they generate is directly related to people liking them as the Royal family. If they are not seen as actively helping out for the greater good, that good will and revenue will dry up.

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    3. I see nothing wrong with another vacation. Its there business and I respect privacy.there happy and get along and whatever works for them is fine with me.same for baby George, he's probably with kates mom and in good hands.and not our concern either.good for those two doing what makes them happy , not listening to other people.i wish them a fun week.

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  12. I wish them a very good holiday! LET THEM BE HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY!
    Whatever they do they would be criticised as people will always focus on what they feel is the "negative" side. Either... or. I am sorry but there is more than two perspectives to everything. So again, good holidays William and Kate. Enjoy yourselves while you can. That will not last for long now. And there will ever be haters. Just ignore them! This is the healthy way to deal with such people.

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    1. Its nice of you to stick up for TRH, but a lot of commenters on here will be British taxpayers (basically TRH's employers) and so they have a right to question where their money is going.

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    2. Jean from Lancs7 March 2014 at 08:27

      Well no---that is not true, they get no money from the tax

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    3. YES, let them BE HAPPY. I don't understand all this fuss about a holiday. William is not the direct successor to the throne - that is Charles. So W & K´s role isn´t that of full-time royals yet. Kate is still on maternity leave and William is doing his studies to follow in his father´s footsteps. Here in Germany we have three possible years of maternity leave if you want to take it. Kate doesn´t need to earn her living in a way that we not so royal people have to and we all knew that before. They will have some long weeks in New Zealand and Australia, so why should´t they have some time as a couple before that. William and Kate seem to work on their relationship as husband and wife and everyone who has children knows that that is really important as parents. So take it easy and don´t be envious. I still love them and they will do their work in style hopefully long years ahead (and surely with some more holidays in-between)!
      Keep breathing. Anja

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    4. bluhare in Washington State7 March 2014 at 20:07

      Jean, that's true. They don't. But taxpayers pay for their security. And they are subsidized by Charles whose income is subsidized by taxpayers as he pays no corporate tax on Duchy income (although I know he does pay income tax). Plus they live rent free in a huge apartment in Kensington, where a one bedroom flat goes for over a million pounds.

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  13. Terrible choice to take another vacation especially without George. I'm really flabbergasted and I say this as a strong fan of W&K. In really left speechless especially in regards to the lack of engagements as well as the myriad a problems in the UK that deserve their attention. This shoes shocking lack in judgemen

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  14. My goodness. If this is true (especially the part about leaving George at home), then I am absolutely flabbergasted. I have always been a big fan of this couple and assumed Kate's lack of engagements recently was because she was on maternity leave. The point of which is to bond with your baby. Big, big thumbs down for second exotic holiday(for Kate) so far in 2014. No matter if the trips are privately funded, many other advantages in their very privileged lives are taxpayer funded. Holidays need to be earned. And as for leaving the baby at home (if true)... so much for the hands on parenting we have been hearing so much about. Verging on shameful.

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  15. To say that I'm shocked about the news that they've gone on holidays would be an understatement. There's been quite a bit of bad press on their lack of engagements - understandably William is doing his Cambridge course. But Kate's only had three engagements this year! A very bad move indeed. I'd also would be interested to see if they did bring George because the past 6 months they've been saying that they are limiting their engagements so there's someone at home with George. I have no problem with them taking a romantic getaway - but don't have double standards please!

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  16. I get six weeks holiday so I can't complain. Its has been a rotten cold winter all over the world. For people complaining about another holiday save a little bit each month the take one. One can even stay in country if they can't travel.

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    1. Stephanie - Canada6 March 2014 at 22:33

      Yes, but I am guessing you work full-time.

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    2. I assume you work the other 46 weeks per year, correct? That is the issue.

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  17. I don't know why people are surprised. We've come to see this from TRH from the beginning. Plenty of style. No Substance. It's scandalous but they've practically taken three months off "preparing for a tour" they'll take another three afterwards and get away it for good measure.

    Kate has sooo much potential to become an important figure. What a waste.

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    1. I know what you mean Anna, Kate has a spotlight to do so much, but it feels more and more like she does the bare minimum. Is it at Charles behest because he doesn't want her in the spotlight? Maybe. I do feel like whatever the agenda, it's poor long term planning on their part. If W&K can't be taken seriously now, why bother taking them seriously in the future?

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    2. Exactly. I don't know why peaple are so surprised.
      Justina

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    3. bluhare in Washington State6 March 2014 at 23:58

      Anna, your last paragraph says it all. What a waste indeed. I wish I had her platform. You'd be seeing a bunch of stuff.

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    4. And Kate has so many resources and very little limitations to accomplish so much in the position she is in. Such a waste of opportunity.

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    5. Jennifer from Wisconsin7 March 2014 at 04:25

      As much as I enjoy Kate's closet and envy her freedom to spend her time to do good, all we have to do is look to her past lack of steady employment other than her parents to see it is who she is. People do not change unless they want or are forced to. Kate has no reason or desire to change. I am so disappointed that she did not see the amazing role model she had in Diana and her legacy. Look at her- she knew the value and good her work brought. Maybe the public will create enough fuss that she will notice. She is not a bad person, just extremely disconnected to reality.

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    6. Ugh, I agree so wholeheartedly. HUGE waste of opportunity! It is hard to not have moral contempt for those who use resources for leisure and nothing else.

      A token charity appearance here and there is actually more of an insult than nothing at all. If I had the time, financial resources, and ready platform that W&K have, I would be extremely busy working on positive projects - humanitarian, scientific, artistic - there is so much to be done! And they are going on holidays.

      Definitely disenchanted. Rich people such as these royals are boring.

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  18. They should be ashamed - losing lots of goodwill

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  19. Hopefully someone will snap good pictures of them in the Maldives!

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  20. This was a PR mistake and a big one.

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    1. I don't know why ppl keep repeating that it was a PR mistake. Don't you think it was just a mistake? If there was no negative reaction from the public, would it all be OK?
      - Justina

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  21. Stephanie - Canada6 March 2014 at 22:34

    Not impressed.

    I think that those who see no problem with this seriously lack an understanding of what the monarchy is for and about.

    How can Kate and Wills actually do this, some ask? Because, they don't care.

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    1. I disagree... I believe they care but they are putting themselves first above all else. I wonder if this is what PC & C wanted- for W & K to be loss popular? If it was their idea, it's certainly working.

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  22. I'm also happy for them resting up before the tour of Australia. Maldives is a very peaceful place to renew energy and recharge batteries. It makes sense to do it BEFORE the big trip actually. And I can't help but think it's a good way to prepare George for when they both have to be away from him in Australia. Testing out the new nanny no doubt, with grandparents and uncles/aunties not far away to jump in and help. Catherine and William are sensible people yet again doing sensible things. There is "method to the madness". I think we have to accept that the outcome will be good!

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    1. You know, I hadn't thought about it that way--preparing George for being away from them. At first I was all up in arms that they're going on vacation AGAIN, but there might actually be some logic to it. Of course, it still doesn't look good.

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    2. They are only spending two night away from george on tour.

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    3. No I agree with everyone that it doesn't look good at all. But what do we know about their lives really? William's study might be exhausting, the commuting exhausting, The renovations and the purple tinged walls driving them crazy.. Catherine might have huge difficulty weaning her big baby boy who is always hungry, goodness I remember those days! I wish I could have escaped to the Maldives.. But they can, so good luck to them!

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  23. Canadian Friend6 March 2014 at 22:54

    Hi, Charlotte,

    Thanks for this post, especially the interesting items about the party for Kate's doctor and the paint colour problems.

    About this latest vacation...I've always said that they really aren't "ordinary" people. Sometimes, I think the PR attempts to portray them as such do them a great disservice. Those stories work, but only sometimes. When they don't, the backlash can be nasty.

    A few further thoughts:
    -Theirs is a long relationship and William and Kate have had a lot of time together. Since I had my son twelve years after I was married, I know it was (and is!) very hard for my husband and I not to have a lot of private time together now when we had so much before. It's especially hard when you want to set high standards as parents.
    -William also missed the Mustique holiday so maybe that might have been their couple time(with lots of Middletons around to help with George) so W. feels they need some before the tour.
    -It may be a wise plan to have George become accustomed to both parents being temporarily absent before the tour so it's not a terrible shock for him, especially since his nanny will also be relatively new. This may also be a test for her too-can she deal effectively with George.
    -I still wonder if some of the paucity in engagements is due to Charles and Camilla not wanting their place to be eclipsed by W. and K.'s popularity.
    -It might have been so much better PR wise to have made a clear statement about K.'s maternity leave plans i.e. we would then know not to expect a lot of engagements for a set amount of time, lessening the backlash.

    I'd like to see them more but I believe it's hard to overestimate the difficulty of living with their level of scrutiny all the time. Let them have a trip together before the Australia/N.Z. tour with all its demands.

    Best wishes to all readers!

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    1. I think you might be correct in Charles pulling the strings on their engagements. William & Catherine are well loved here in England and Charles & Camilla are not. I can see Charles playing this game because the Princess of Wales out shined Charles so he does not want his son & daughter in law for follow in the Princesses footsteps.

      Yes people in England are warming up to Camilla but Catherine just out shines her and Charles does not like that.

      CJ from England

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    2. "-It may be a wise plan to have George become accustomed to both parents being temporarily absent before the tour so it's not a terrible shock for him, especially since his nanny will also be relatively new. This may also be a test for her too-can she deal effectively with George."

      They will be away from him for 2 days during the tour. They could have just agreed to let one of the multiple nannies take care of him for a 24 hour period while they're rattling around the other 56 rooms of their "apartment."

      And to many people, Camilla, her professionalism, and her work ethic clearly outshine Kate Middleton.

      Delete
    3. I agree that some of their PR does them a disservice. Sometimes the more you explain the more people have to dissect.

      And I still can't help but wonder who's calling the shots and what the true agenda may be.

      Also, someone said that the public tends to forget and I would agree with that. The timing of W&K's trip may not be ideal, and I said so earlier, but before we talk about Camilla's professionalism and work ethic, does anyone recall this hot topic from 2008? (Camilla's third year as Charles wife...and future Queen.)

      http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/37317/Lazy-Camilla-in-yacht-row

      She flew to Antigua a week *prior* to their Caribbean tour to rest up and she spent it with her ex-husband Andrew and his wife, and her son Tom and his family. (Meanwhile, Kate can't go to Mustique with mom and dad, right?) And for the Caribbean tour, C&C hired a £320,000-a-week yacht with the bill covered by taxpayers. AND Camilla was to miss 10 out of 44 engagements so she could rest or prepare for other duties while onboard the 246ft yacht. And I also remember her leaving another tour early because she had trouble dealing with the heat. Just one or two snippets to remember.......

      Another point to consider....when other royals take a break and go to Scotland, for example, no one has an issue with it because a.) they may not even know about it, and b.) it's not as enviable a break as a sandy beach.

      Like I said, the timing of this trip may not be the best PR move, but there are other things to consider...or remember....

      Delete
    4. Well said. My first thought was they have gone through one of those shaky times as sometimes occur in a marriage after a child is born. They need this holiday together, bad timing for their public image though it is.
      More troubling is the nagging feeling that they see themselves as wealthy aristocrats (which they are) but blithely ignore their position as senior Royals. Thus they come off as spoiled brats. History tells me that most young Royals have been the despair of their sovereign parents at times - but that was before our modern intrusive news media. Time to grow up, Will and Kate.

      Delete
    5. Agree royalfan! When William landed a helicopter in Carherine's front yard people thought it was cute. It would have cost the taxpayers a fair bit... Just a thought!

      Delete
  24. I've never commented, but I feel compelled to today in Kate (and William's) defense. I don't think it's fair to judge them for taking a vacation right now. There's precedent for this pre-tour vacation - they went to France shortly before their last big trip (I'm sure we all remember the topless photo kerfuffle that ensued from the trip!). Did Kate just go to Mustique, with her family (and notably WITHOUT William?) Yes, she did, and there's precedent for that, too - the Middletons always go there, around the same time of year. Did William just take one weekend (and notably WITHOUT Kate?) recently? Yes, he did. Are they not allowed some private time for a vacation that actually includes both of them together before they go on a very high-profile, demanding tour of two countries where they have to be "on" at all times? Perhaps it is inconvenient timing that they all coincide within a few months, but that's just how it fell out.

    Other than the pre-Asia tour vacation to France, I can't remember the last time we heard about them having a romantic getaway to themselves. Also, I don't know how many of the disgruntled comments are from Americans thinking TRH are taking too much time off, but it is standard to start off with six weeks' holiday for a traditional (i.e. non-royal) job in England (I'm American, but my boyfriend is British - so if I'm remember incorrectly, please correct me British readers!). If Kate has only taken 2 weeks so far this year for some cushy relaxing, then by a "working person's" standard she still has 4 weeks left. Are people going to grumble when she takes those, too? I don't begrudge them a little vacation at all

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    1. Interesting points Ash. Are you a British taxpayer? I only ask because I am, and I can tell you there's a lot of struggling going on at the moment. Families are struggling, social problems, NHS services are barely coping. We need to see our royal family out there working hard helping to highlight the above issues. There would not be a problem with these holidays if they put in any sort of work the rest of the time.

      Delete
    2. I don't think anyone begrudges them a fair amount of time off, but they also need to do a reasonable amount of work. The work aspect has been lacking for months and months.

      Delete
    3. bluhare in Washington State6 March 2014 at 23:49

      In order to have "time off", one needs some "time on".

      Delete
    4. bluhare in Washington State7 March 2014 at 00:00

      As I said earlier, in order to have time off, one needs to have time on.

      Delete
    5. Well, no, I'm not - the boyfriend and I live in Seattle. Actually, he has absolutely no use for the Royal Family and thinks I'm a little odd for being so into them, haha ;) But, that's a valid point - I'm not paying tax over there, so any perceived OR proven lack of influence/inaction is not going to affect my opinion of them as much from 8,000 miles away. But in general, I'm far more likely to down on the side of forgiveness because I don't know what all they are doing behind the scenes, or what other reasons they may have had for making this choice at this time (I am inclined to also agree with the "test run the nanny" theory others have suggested).

      I think they ARE going to be working hard on their upcoming tour to promote good relationships, and bring an international spotlight on cultures like the Maori (the king's withdrawal notwithstanding), but don't get me wrong - I don't think they are infalliable. There's just so much that doesn't make into the news this far away about what circumstances are like over there. I think, from what I saw, they could have helped more with the flooding crisis - but even then, I don't know what all was going on and I find it hard to judge negatively with only having part of the story. So, I suppose I'm judging positively with only having part of the story! ;)

      Delete
    6. Ash I totally agree. Most of the one's here complaining are not from England but they still feel they have to attack William and Catherine. I am from England and even though I pay heavy taxes here most of England like the royal family. They bring in alot of pounds every year. Most of the private holidays that William & Catherine take are at their expense not the taxes payers except for the protection officers. So my word to the complainers from the United Staes is just relax and let them have a few days to themselves.

      CJ

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    7. bluhare in Washington State7 March 2014 at 03:08

      Until Charlotte decides to ban non UK residents from commenting, using the old "you aren't a tax payer so shut up" argument is a poor substitute for actual reasoned thinking. And just out of curiosity, CJ, what's your word to complainers from the UK?

      I would also like to point out that William and Kate either outright lied or seriously mislead people when they went to France. They pulled out of attending the Paralympics to "prepare for their upcoming tour". They just omitted the fact the preparation was going to be in France, on holiday, while sunbathing. And then they were caught out when the photos hit the world.

      Delete
    8. IMO, the fact that they have made boneheaded decisions in the past doesn't justify making yet another one...if anything, they should have learned their lesson given the backlash in the past.

      K

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    9. Your whole arguement stands on the position of a person that works full time: 8 hrs a day, 5 days a week. Also, taking time off of work with or without your spouse is still considered time gone by an employer in any country so I do not know why you chose to put the word 'without' in caps multiple times.

      Delete
    10. @bluhare I did not say shut up. The complainers from England should be ashamed of themselves. They know what goes on here. I guess they are following whatever the people from the US are saying so they believe it. I never brought up France so I guess you also put words in peoples mouth.

      It just amazes me bluhare that you know so much about England and how the Royal family works and you live in Washington State. I invite you to come to England for a few years and really learn about the Royal family, you will be really surprised.

      CJ

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    11. bluhare in Washington State7 March 2014 at 17:44

      No, you didn't say "shut up", CJ. Ever heard of paraphrasing? That's what I did. I paraphrased what you said, which essentially was the old "if you aren't a taxpayer your opinion isn't worth the bandwidth it uses" argument. And my point still stands regarding the use of that argument.

      I'm English. Born there of English parents, and I am not a US citizen. I love the royal family, which is one of the reasons I am so disappointed in William and Kate right now. And that was a nice slag on your fellow taxpayers, saying that they don't have minds of their own so they have to look to people from the US to form an opinion.

      My paragraph about France was in reference to the original poster, who did mention that holiday.

      Delete
  25. I assume that William made the decision to go on holiday. I think Kate is quite happy to follow his lead. I can't imagine that she would have initiated this trip since she recently returned from holiday. What on earth were they thinking! These are not just any rich and famous people. They represent the people of the United Kingdom and this will not win them any points or admiration amongst their subjects. There is already a growing number of people who want to abolish the monarchy and this may just win over some new converts who were "on the fence" about their importance.

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  26. I feel like W&K can't decide if they want to be Royalty, or just very rich, private citizens. They seem to want it both ways, whatever works best for them at any given time. Doesn't come across well.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. bluhare in Washington State7 March 2014 at 00:00

      THIS!!!

      Delete
    2. VERY well said, Sue!! Exactly!! And as someone added - this is who they both are, this is who they have both been for years. The only reason we're just now discovering it is because they were the darlings of the press for so long. When the spotlight fades, the truth tends to come out.

      Delete
  27. The Maldives is extremely luxurious and probably one of the most beautiful places yo vacation in the world in my opinion.

    Not sure what they are thinking right now, as Kate barely leaves the house but has spent at least 14 days (after this Maldives trip) basking in the sun. I am all for vacation and luxury, I love it myself but think it was a careless and selfish trip. She just came back from mustique ... This is ill timed and going to be looked down on for a while.

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  28. Maybe they have private reasons to take this vacation now. And it indicates that they have either hired a new full time nanny, or grandma Carole will be in charge.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Caroline in montana6 March 2014 at 23:49

    Wow! I am amazed at how angry people seem to be about this vacation! I agree with Canadian friend and Florence, good trial run for the nanny and pg as both his parents will not be available during the tour. K & W need to spend some time, get on the same page and then bust through this tour. They will be criticized no matter what, don't see how people can put feelings on them, like if they go on vacation "they don't care". So negative, agree with who ever said the negative Nancy's are jealous!! And to all the tax paying Brits, I'd take your monarchy over the jackass us president any day of the week! PG is 9 months old, so if they go on a vacation for a few days they are suddenly NOT hands on parents?? So silly! Hope to see new photos soon. Thanks lady Charlotte! - Caroline in Montana

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    1. You are missing the point. Had they been working regularly, no one would blame them for taking a vacation. Had they not claimed that they couldn't work because they had to stay home and be hands on parents, nobody would blame them for taking a vacation.

      But when you claim you can't work because you have to stay home with the baby, and then you go on vacation WITHOUT the baby, then yes, you look like liars.

      K

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    2. The elected head of the United Kingdom is Prime Minister David Cameron. No one voted for Elizabeth, although the government does vote to allocate funds for the monarchy, so I suppose you might stretch the comparison to include the 63 million Americans Who voted for President Obama. That'd roughly the entire population of the UK.

      Delete
    3. "Jackass US President..."?! REALLY? Now that is classy.
      THANK YOU Greybird K for pointing out that the MAJORITY voted for Mr. Obama.
      Caroline, I'm curious, why are you such a "Negative Nelly" about the President?
      PS: you can always move to the UK....

      Delete
    4. Portia from Chicago7 March 2014 at 15:15

      Caroline from Montana. It is beyond crass to refer to a head of state as a "jackass". Get some class.

      Delete
    5. How many of those voters actually regret their decision- I guess our poles show that ALOT do! Move to another country? no thanks - this is still the greatest place in the world- IN SPITE of all of it.

      Delete
  30. If it is true that they didn't took george with them, the whole 'hands on parents' thing they have been telling us for months is not that important. If you can leave your child for a week, you can leave him for 2 hours to do an engagement. So I am not buying the whole 'she wants to be with george' excuse for not doing engagements anymore.

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  31. I get the feeling that William does what he wants when he wants. If it were up to him, he would probably stay in the RAF and not become King. There's nothing wrong with them taking a vacation with or without the baby, but it all comes down to perception. As many people comment on here, Kate has only made 3 appearances this year and William is on a "gap" year learning about farming right now. If they were more active Royals, I think people would not begrudge them their holidays but right now they are not out and about for some strange reason that I cannot fathom. I know their Australian tour is gong to be grueling, but perhaps if this trip was taken after that it would have been perceived much better.

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    1. Jennifer from Wisconsin7 March 2014 at 04:32

      Well said

      Delete
    2. Jean from Lancs7 March 2014 at 16:32

      he never said he was on a "Gap" year---that was the "Daily Mail." The official word was "Transitional".
      Serving in all 3 armed services , including the extremely hard and dangerous Air;Sea Rescue, was part of his training for monarchy. He is now undertaking further training.
      It is reported that there is a short break in the Cambridge course which finishes the end of the month,
      It was stated that after the tour he would begin with periods in government departments and charities

      Delete
    3. Jean I don't know why you are wasting your breath trying to explain things to these people on the blog. They want to believe what the read or hear in the media or newspapers which most are just the rag papers. You & I live in the Country and see for ourselves what the Royal family really does for our Country.

      CJ

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  32. Maybe they wanted a few days away on their own. Maybe she has post partum depression. We have no idea what's going on at home for them. For goodness sake they've done plenty before the child was born. I'm sure they'll get back into it but give them the benefit of the doubt.

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    1. Agree. Maybe she is struggling post George. Many women do. Maybe their marriage needs some time. Many do. Anyone who read any book on the Diana era would be amazed at the private pain she felt whilst smiling yo the world. Who knows... Give them a break.
      Theresa Australia

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    2. If she is struggling, William should have been home with her, not taking a course he could easily have taken some other time. And if they needed a holiday together, they could have taken a few days at one of the beautiful royal estates with miminial fuss, not a hugely expensive sunshine resort.

      It's a slap in the face to their future subjects who have spent the winter struggling with miserable weather and some of whom are dealing with flood destroyed homes.

      It is tasteless and tactless for William and Kate to go off at this moment, flaunting their wealth and opportunities. They are royals, not celebrities. People are expected to treat them with respect, not contempt and show deference to them. In exhange, they are supposed to behave with a regard for their future subjects.

      I fear they are a pair of spoilt brats, nothing more.

      Delete
  33. I'm a super royal fan and love the BRF! For once I agree with the negative posters. They need to actually work to justify holidays and lengthy periods of nothing. People say there would be complaining either way, actually that is untrue. Who would complain to hear Kate was supporting charities? meeting sick kids? raising profiles? Not one person who commented here. I'm willing to bet on that.

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  34. I agree with most of the negative comments here and some of the positive ones. One thing I haven't seen mentioned (maybe it was -- I skimmed this!). Apparently the Queen has approved their vacations or I don't think they would be going. So, there must be pretty good consensus of why this is okay. The Queen is very smart about what is good for the county. I think where they hurt themselves, though, is in not explaining more of the "whys". I think William is a little too paranoid of the press, yet in all fairness who can blame him when we see the history there. I just hope in time they will use a bit more wisdom and maturity in both rolling with the punches and in explaining why they do things; and I hope Catherine can roll up her sleeves and get really into it. The closest she came was on the camp outs with the scouts in the snow when she was pregnant. That brings up another thing. What has happened to her involvement in that cause? I'd like to see her speak out with passion on something she is really interested in, like Prince Charles has been about countryside, farming, and environmental issues. She was an art history major. Why not speak out about beauty and art and preservation of architecture and history, etc.? I guess in time we'll see the answers to all these things. Thank you, Charlotte, for keeping the conversation moving!

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    1. why do they need to explain "why" to the public? I don't think that they are required to answer everybody's "why" ?

      Delete
    2. When you represent the public and your whole life is funded by the public, then I'd think you are required to answer to said public.

      K

      Delete
    3. Anonymous 05:13 Their whole life is not funded by the people of England. This is public knowledge if you want to read researh the Royal family. It is very interesting even for one who lives in England.

      CJ

      Delete
  35. Kristin, San Francisco7 March 2014 at 00:54

    WOW, indeed!!! I am hard to impress a lot of times... now speechless really. In my office we need to fill out a vacation request form in triplicate 6 weeks ahead of time at minimum, obviously making sure other vac requests get honored as well...the old seniority thing.
    We know not much of what is going on behind closed doors @ KP, do we?...
    I do appreciate everyone's comments and when I wake up tomorrow morn, I might have a better handle on this trip.

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  36. Not a good move. Most women have to go back to work after they have a baby. There's been precious little work going on. As one of your contributors said - you have to have time on to have time off. Surely an appointment or three a week isn't too arduous a task ...

    ReplyDelete
  37. Here's my opinion. W & K are not fully to blame for this. You have to look at the big picture.
    1. If the queen or Charles was unhappy with w & k's work, they would be told.
    2. W & K are only a small part of a large royal family. The Queen, Phillip, Charles, Camilla, Edward, Sophie, William, Kate, Harry, Anne, Andrew and the queen's cousins are all working royals. I think the palace is trying to rein in the "Will and Kate" show to keep better harmony in the family. Theres a lot going on right now. But let's face it if W or K were doing engagements every day nobody would even hear about what the other royals were doing. I don't think anyone is mad at W & K for their popularity just trying to control it a little better. A generation ago the royal family became "The Diana Show" and that didn't end well.
    3. The royal schedule is dictated by someone higher than W & K.Now could W & K step up more, sure but W has been pretty busy this year and Kate first responsibility is G. From the comments about G from W and Harry I get the impression he's been a bit of a difficulty baby. Now do the rest of us have to deal with a baby not sleeping and go to work too? Sure but let's face it Kate isn't like us. Get over it everyone.
    4. Finally these are just 2 vacations. One with her family that kate takes every year. The other there is precedent for a vacation right before a tour. Just unfortunately they are close in time to each other this year. I think the summer will pick up. However I also expect kate to get pregnant again soon after this tour so the whole cycle starts all over agajn.

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    1. Portia from Chicago7 March 2014 at 04:45

      Have you been following this blog for long ? Someone who used to work at the palace commented a few times how the Queen is NOT involved with the number of engagements or pace of work Royals set for themselves. They are in charge of their schedules. This has also been validated numerous times in the press - and even by William and Kate's office. The fact that THEY decide their schedule. I don't understand why people don't accept this fact. You are wrong about 1 and 3.

      About 2 - do you think that W&K are puppets? There is some sort of idea that they are little puppets that some unknown management controls. No. They are autonomous humans who decide how much and when to work. Nobody manages them, nobody tells them what to do. Charles and Camilla don't try to manipulate them and DO NOT have anything to do with their schedules.

      It is tiring to see people use C&C to justify any crap that W&K pull. Anything. For decades these two have shown people that they are NOT interested in work, NOT interested in charity and NOT interested in taking on their duties. For decades. Why is it so hard to believe that this is really and truly who they are ? This is nothing new - jetting off to vacations, not working through their 20s. Kate was a young 20 something who spent her days and nights waiting to be courted by William. And she is now a 30 something following his lead.

      There is no conspiracy. There is no plot to destroy them. This is who they are and this is what they have done for decades. ACCEPT IT. All of you. Seriously.

      Delete
    2. Jean from Lancs7 March 2014 at 08:53

      I think you do them an injustice. Catherine because the paparazzi made it impossible for her to remain in London.On her 25th birthday she was chased down the road by large crowds of men. She and her sister were also chased when returning from an evening out and were also blocked from getting into their parents' home.
      One has to ask how you would have dealt with that.
      They are entitled to a holiday. Until last September William had a full time job---one of the most difficult possible and for Catherine looking after a baby is not the easiest job and we do not even know if George is with them.
      For some on this site want to see more of Catherine so they can tear her to pieces.

      Delete
    3. Portia, why do you read this blog if you seem to hate the royal family so much? Wouldn't your time be better spent on something else?

      Delete
    4. bluhare in Washington State7 March 2014 at 21:23

      Hey, Portia . . . welcome to the club!!!

      Delete
    5. Paige I agree with you. Their are some here that really love to say unkind things about William & Catherine no matter how they lead their lives.

      Delete
    6. Until Charlotte bans freedom of speech, all are welcome to express their opinions, even if you disagree with them. You can admire the idea of monarchy and still be horrified by the lazy and entitled wastrels William and Kate Middleton.

      Delete
  38. In my opinion you can't completely blame W and K for this. You have to look at the big picture.
    1. If the queen or Charles was not happen with the amount of engagements by W & K something would change. Someone high up dictates the royal schedule. Now could W and K step up more? Sure but W has been relatively busy and Kate first priority is G. Personally from the comments about G in the press I get the feeling he's been a bit of a difficult baby. Do the rest of us have to work and take care of a non sleeping baby? Yes but let's face it Kate is not like the rest of us. Get over it everyone.
    2. W and K are just a small part of a large working royal family. The queen, Phillip, Charles, Camilla, Anne, Andrew, Edward, Sophie, William , Kate, Harry plus the queen's cousins are all working royals. And there has been a lot going on lately. But if kate does an engagement nobody covers Edward and Sophie on tour and the public doesn't care. I think the palace is trying to maintain a balance and control the popular "Will and Kate Show" to keep harmony in the family. Let's face it, a generation ago "The Diana Show" got out of control and ended terribly. I don't think other members of the family are mad at W and K but I think they are trying to keep balance.
    3. These are just 2 vacations. One that kate takes every year with her family. The other before a tour which they did last time too. Its just unfortunate that they are so close together this year.I think the summer will pick up. But I also think kate will probably get pregnant again after this tour so the cycle will start all over.

    Bottom line I'm a little disappointed with the holiday. But everyone needs to look at the bigger picture.

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  39. Marci from Salt Lake7 March 2014 at 01:41

    I wonder why nobody has acknowledged that it IS work to take care of a baby--it is NOT a vacation. Those people who go out to work have to hire somebody to take care of the children, right? You cannot say the people who take care of your children while you are at work are on some kind of vacation while you work, can you, really? Despite the fact that your child caregivers are probably underpaid and overworked?

    I am a little disturbed by so many people discounting child care as any kind of work at all. I say kudos to Catherine for deciding (because she can afford it) to make rearing George her primary job right now. And if she and William need a break together, away from George, that is, to me, understandable and not a sign of hypocrisy or neglect.

    I do think that the Royal Family could do a better job of explaining things. But maybe they expect us to think things out, weigh what we can see, and come to better conclusions with less judgmental attitudes.

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    1. Stephanie - Canada7 March 2014 at 03:53

      Nobody has acknowledged that it is work to take care of the baby because that is not what the taxpayers pay Kate to do, and she has multiple staff (nannies, housekeepers, and cooks).

      It might also be different if Kate worked regularly prior to becoming a mother, but she did not. Barely worked before and after marriage. Its a trend, people have noticed.

      Delete
    2. Jennifer from Wisconsin7 March 2014 at 04:37

      I think you make a good point, but I worked full-time. Ran two companies part time, was pregnant and took care of my four year with help maybe four hours a week and I still think it was ill thought out.

      Delete
    3. Portia from Chicago7 March 2014 at 04:46

      Marci, did the fact that Kate has had round the clock childcare elude you so far ? Nobody is discounting that childcare is work. Nobody just believes that childcare is what Kate was doing, as she has had at least one, and by many accounts TWO nannies working for her.

      Delete
    4. Well I will disagree with you all. First off William & Catherine are not paid a salary. Yes they do get their tours and protection officer paid for by the tax payers, which I am one. Yes they do live in a Palace that tax payers pay for but they also bring in millions of pounds to the Country yearly.

      Just to set the record straight, first they do not have two nannies. They have one part time until the tour starts. They have one housekeeper/cook. That is all the Camridges employe at this time.

      Where were you all when Fergie and Sohpie came on the royal scene. If you all know anything regarding the Royal family you would know that new Royals do not become full time working Royals for 5 years.

      I find it amazing that most of you that complain about what William & Catherine do or don't do are from the US. I invite you all to come to England and live here for a few years and see what really goes on. Then write and let us all know what you think about William & Catherine.

      I would not complain about your President because I do not live in the US and do not know the in's & out's of the US government. So I don't think you can complain about the Royal couple or any other Royal family member.

      CJ

      Delete
    5. Wow, CJ.
      I guess that, as an American, I am only allowed to read the blog...not comment. Gotcha.

      Delete
    6. Wow, I see that you must be Kate's good friend or maybe you are one of her employees! Yes, your knowledge about her personal life is simply amazing. I think that Charlotte should be taking all the info about Kate from you and we will be first one to know what is going on under Kate's roof!

      Delete
    7. Anonymous 15:45 I did not say that. You can do whatever you want. I was making a statement that people in the US does not always know what goes on in England and the Royal family.

      Anonymous 16:20 All this what I stated is public knowledge. You just have to read or live it, which I do living in England and an English tax payer.

      CJ

      Delete
  40. I think people are assuming more involvement from the queen than she probably has. There is no reason to believe that she approved of Charles being with Camilla while he was still married or Sophie talking with the false sheik or some of Andrew's faux pas. The impression I have is she stays out of family matters and lets the members rise and fall as they may. And William and Kate's reputation is falling fast, even among traditional supporters.

    Regardless, of where the blame for this misguided holiday lies, the burden is going to fall on Kate. A few more holidays like this combined with almost no engagements and she will be Duchess Dolitte forever in the public mind. even if she does more. Reputations get fixed in the public mind and she has squandered the charmed reputation she has on her marriage and is getting one of being spoilt and work-shy.

    As for bringing more attention to other royals, forget it. It just makes the whole monarchy look like a waste of money and gives an enormous and unnecessary boast to republicians who will take much pleasure in this unearned holiday. You want your most noticable members to be the hardest working.

    I'm beginning to think that William is quite arrogant and thinks the public will always forget and forgive as long as there are nice snaps from the tour. But he and Kate are badly pressing public patience and I know some usual monarchists have already written off the dolittles. One day, William may wake up and find public support is just not there anymore. Ask any one-time famous person. You can be out of favour as quickly as a blink of an eye.

    I'm growing a bit tired about hearing how they don't want another Diana. Diana was a very young girl in a very bad marriage and that was where the trouble lay. Turning public favour away from the couple at the end of the day will be much more of a trial for the whole royal family. That's when the public and government begin to think about stripping royal privilages.

    Don't write off the security expenses of this couple. The expenses are enormous and any time they travel, on business or pleasure, the public pays huge sums. I believe that is one reason the queen rarely takes a holiday away from one of her homes.

    For the sake of their son George, this couple needs to sort themselves out fast and remember the only thing that justifies the existence of the monarchy is its devotion to duty and the public good.

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    1. bluhare in Washington State7 March 2014 at 17:51

      I hope you throw of your "anonymous" moniker and start posting under a name. Your post is very well put.

      Delete
  41. Even as a massive fan of William and Kate, I still feel quite disappointed right now. Like bluhare said, you have to have 'on' time to have 'off' time, and Kate has only done three engagements this year, and she's already been on a fancy exotic holiday. Honestly, I'm beginning to think they should go work for a travel company instead of half-assing around being ~part time royals~ because right now they're holidaying more than they're working.

    To the people suggesting it's to see how George adjusts to the nanny: they could have done that without leaving the country. I'm sure there are charities and causes they could visit in england, and if they did several over a few days (gasp) maybe they could stay away from George overnight without going to the maldives!

    I'm still a fan... but Will and Kate reallyyyyy need to start trying harder,

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  42. Like many others, I am a longtime fan of HRH and this blog, but never commented until today. I echo many other posts of not feeling like the timing is right. I also am very disappointed in both TRH. If they didn't bring Prince George (the Daily Mail is reporting he is home with the Middletons...not sure how legit that is), then in my opinion, that discredits all of the talking points we have been fed since George was born. I am disappointed, because it seems like TRH knew this could be poor PR, but were banking on public affection for them to not have us notice. And I can't help but now question the real reason George is going on this Australia/New Zealand tour. Is it really to show us the baby and have us forget that they are barely working?? Shaking my head.

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  44. I have it on good authority that one of the posters here - insert your name here- has 3 eyes, (1 in the back of its head), 6 legs, and a tail. I know this, because I read it online. True, it was mentioned only on one site initially, but now is everywhere, so it must be true.
    Wouldn't it be great if we could just pick up the phone and say, "Hey, Kate, who made that piece of jewellry (or dress) you wore today?" Or , "Why the heck aren't you getting out there on public engagements more?" Obviously, we can't do that, so we speculate. This seems harmless, as long as the suject is clothing, etc. It seems to me that sometimes the harmless speculation turns into just plain bullying.
    I don't pay taxes for the support of the BRF, but I do give support to our natioal park system, which I consider equivalent the BRF,in some ways. I must admit my admiration took a down-turn recently when I read an account of the contents of PC's closet. No doubt it is paid for with private funds, but if he can afford such really egotistical extravagance, maybe he needs less public support. My facts are shaky here.
    However, the way I see it : W&K have about 45 engagements on the coming tour; adding 3 past activities and subtracting the 8 ordinary April engagements- the concensus is 2 a week, right?- that leaves 37, which is just less than 5 months. That takes them through May.
    If you have read all this, I thank you for your patience. Charlotte, your blog has been such a treat for me. I had always pictured you as a little- old-lady in a flowered hat, typing away, The expertise and elegance you demonstrate seemed beyond that of most younger people. I only started reading the comments some time between the christening and the gray-hair incident. Now I read them in sort of love/hate fascination.

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  45. I am of course not at all surprised by the negative comments here, which follow those in the media. It seems to me that since William has almost reached the end of his agriculture course, and Catherine may well have weaned Prince George after he started eating baby foods at six months, they may have a sense of a bit of freedom from the duties that have kept them very busy. Thus they are ready for some couple time before their long tour. That doesn't make the Maldives vacation a good PR move, but it seems understandable.

    I also have wondered whether the absence of Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton, who seemed to keep things on an even keel, has affected the Cambridges' relationship with the press, and perhaps decisions about their schedule as well. Since he left as Prince William's secretary, a decision which coincided with William's leaving the military, the move to London, and Prince George joining the family, there seems to be less visible direction in William and Catherine's life. Did Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton agree with Prince William and Prince Charles about William's future, I wonder? Or if they disagreed with each other, did he find himself in an awkward position? He had been with Prince William and Prince Harry for something like eight years, and perhaps simply wanted a change, and maybe freedom from long tours since he has a young family. But he had a sure grasp of what was good for the princes and their public, and I think it is missed. William's current secretary did a nice, cheerful job with the tour announcement. But that is different from a candid and professional behind the scenes influence over the princes' and Catherine's public activities.

    I hope that Prince George will have a happy and contented week, wherever he is and whoever is taking care of him! I also hope that everyone here will eventually be satisfied with the performance of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge!

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  46. Book me a seat on the Disappointed Bandwagon! I didn't have a problem with the trip to France before Will & Kate undertook the last tour. They were staying at a relative's property and relaxing. Fine. The trip Kate took to Mustique in January didn't bother me because it was a family thing that they do every year. No big deal. But this particular five-star-luxury-resort-all-to-themselves (if the online articles are to be believed) vacation is just too over-the-top for me combined with the lack of engagements. It makes me wrinkle my nose when I think of it. I don't think I would have had the same reaction had they left PG with granny and gone for a week in the country or skiing or even holed up in a luxury resort in a big city in another country. I wouldn't have "perceived" the trip as being one for the thoughtlessly idle wealthy, but that is what has happened.

    Some can say that what I think of W&K's personal choices shouldn't matter as fan, and I fully acknowledge that I do not know what they have been doing in their personal time, as well as the fact that being the parents of an infant is exhausting. However, in their business, public perception is key. Clearly, if so many of us, as nit picky yet ever supportive fans, are disappointed, they made a bad choice. I'll get over it, but some of that excitement for the upcoming tour has left me at the moment. It's a shame, really.

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  47. Can anyone tell me how much of public money is used to finance the british royal family per annum?
    And where does the money exactly go towards? One would think it can be used only for certain purposes.

    I try to understand what the royals receive public money for. To fund their public and private life? To maintain their historic places?
    And what's expected in return? What are they exactly expected or obligated to fulfil? What's their mission, role, assignment? Is there a definition? Is there an actual responsibility?

    I really have no clue. I live in New Zealand but was raised and spent most of my life in Germany. So the whole concept of royalty and aristocracy in present days just doesn't make sense to me. Which doesn't mean I am not fascinated by it.

    Maybe someone would like to provide some information on "the royal family receives taxpayer's money in order to ....." subject.

    Thanks Guys!

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    1. Jean from Lancs7 March 2014 at 13:29

      Anna form NZ--I will try.
      In the reign of one of the Georges---(can't off the top of my head remember whether the second or third) the Crown Estates were turned over to the government in return for the civil list---meant to cover expenses for the head of state. The amount was settled at the beginning of each reign. This has been a long reign, so the original settlement was updated. HM tried to keep an emergency fund for major repairs, but under the last government,she was told she must use this money.
      The present government looked at it again and decides to return to the Monarch 15% of the revenues from the Crown Estate. The total revenue at present is over £200 million and she gets about £30 million for expenses including the upkeep Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle and some other buildings.
      You will see from this that the taxpayer doesn't do too badly---no one in the Royal Family is salaried.
      The Queen has a private income from the Duchy of Lancaster estate which came from the marriage of John of Gaunt to the heiress of Lancaster. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are supported by the Prince of Wales from his private income from the Duchy of Cornwall--first settled by Edward III on his son ( The Black Prince).
      It is obvious that if Britain decided to it preferred a Presidency---justice would demand that the Crown properties were returned--or purchased back.
      None of the Royal Family is actually employed--except the Queen---who has certain constitutional responsibilities.
      It has frequently been pointed out that the wife of a direct heir to the throne (or of a female heiress) has only one duty i-- to produce the next generation of heirs, .

      Delete
    2. A few additions to Jean's excellent summary.

      The Duchy of Cornwall isn't exactly "private". Designed to support the heir to the throne, it cannot be treated by him completely as his private property. (Changes seem to have been made with the end of primogentur so a female heir can benefit.) If the monarchy should end, the Duchy of Cornwall would almost certainly go to the government, not to Charles. That's what happened during the time of the Commonwealth.

      Because of its semi-public private nature, Charles is expected to pay tax on the "private" portion of it. He seems to be left pretty much to his discretion as to how much is private and cut the percentage back at his first marriage.

      Security and certain other expenses comes directly out of the public purse. This is a huge expense and not one to take lightly. William and Kate. although they have private wealth, would reel if they got the bill. And the high training of that security has value in itself. Diana might have been alive today if she had continued to be protected.

      The crown estates would almost certainly remain public should the monarchy end. (Unlike the private estates of Sandringham and Balmoral.) When they moved into Kensington Palace, there was an expectation that William and Kate would undertake full duties. While in the past, flats in Kensington Palace would given out by the queen to her sister, elderly relatives, etc. today as in so many things, standards are fussier. Royals who don't take on public duties are expected to pay fair market rent.

      This was the case with Prince and Princess Michael of Kent. (Who might like more public duties but are too far down the list.) If William and Kate don't become more involved in their home nation, there could be a similar demand.

      While royal duties have not been formally designated except to some extent for the queen, there has in the last century, been a strong emphasis on public duty. This was to make the monarchy have relevance after the final political power was stripped away. Queen Mary. not the most likeable of ladies but a force, defined it best to one Kate-like relative who complained about hospital visits. "We are the royal family. We are never tired and we LOVE hospitals."

      Until the Nineties, public duties were linked to money for many royals. It was called the Ciivil List. The more a royal family member did, the more money they received. That was abolished and the queen now gets a sum to divide. This was thought to be so she could support elderly relations no longer working, altough she and Philip along with Anne and Charles, now seem to be supporting the younger generation.

      No promise that William and Kate will be working that hard in their eighties. Habits tend to get ingrained young.

      As far as the only duty of the heir's wife being to produce another heir, I find that horribly outdated in today's world and the monarchy won't survive if that's its philosophy. The way things are going, George might end up singing for his supper, as do a number of European royal families who assumed too much, or who were caught by political changes outside of their control. Or he could go to work for Party Pieces.

      Brtain is changing rapidly. It is becoming a far more ethnically diverse nation, with many emigrants and knowledge - as well as rumour and gossip - are spread rapidly over the Internet. People, for better or for worse, no longer automatically respect tradtion. The monarchy needs at this time, to be seen as more relevant than ever and all it's members need to work as hard as possible. Or, despite the lack of a defined role, they may find themselves out of a job.

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    3. Exactly. Britain is going to change dramatically over the next few years. The Scottish referendum and soon to be followed by an EU referendum if, heaven forbid, we elect another Tory government, has gotten everyone really thinking about what kind of country we actually want to be. Britain is one of the most unequal countries in the developed world, and people will get quickly peeved at w&k. Her majesty won't be around for much longer - maybe 15/20 years if she lives as long as her mother. Once she goes, I think the spell will break and we will realise how ridiculous the situation is. I mean an 87 year old woman works more than a 32 year old woman. Maybe by the time its William's turn to be king, there will be no throne for him to ascend to!

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  48. I don't understand how they either are so oblivious, or aware and don't care? I am a huge duchess fan... But like most here feel very disappointed in her light workload. She goes out to a club for a party, on two holidays, and redecorated but cannot do more than a small handful of engagements?

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  49. Portia from Chicago7 March 2014 at 04:49

    There is more on this tour. Note that this is all official.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2575239/Wills-Kate-jet-second-honeymoon-Maldives-minus-George.html

    Also note that George was left with the Middletons (no doubt WITH his two nannies) in Berkshire with two bodyguards.

    I have to say, that if I were paying a dime of my own money on the royals I would be BOUNDING towards the republicans right about now.

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    1. Portia, I agree. And the irony is they're headed to Australia in April - that'll be the SECOND vacation - which leans republican and which consistently threatens to hold a national referendum on separating from the crown and declaring a republic.
      I would expect George has more than two bodyguards, especially since he's at a non-royal residence, further adding to the cost of this little jaunt.
      The whole thing is just mind-boggling.

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    2. bluhare in Washington State7 March 2014 at 17:54

      Australia won't be a vacation, although I understand they will have some days off while they are there. And I don't have a problem with that at all.

      Delete
  50. Wow. Just ... wow.
    Monumentally bad decision.
    I have a tough time believing that William and Kate are so tone-deaf that they would think this is a good choice or maybe they're just so spoiled and sheltered - and arrogant - that they feel they can do what they want, public opinion be damned.
    I said it before and I'll repeat it - for some time now, William and Kate have been squandering the massive amount of popularity and public adoration of them by these terrible choices that just show them to be spoiled, self-indulgent aristocrats with absolutely no regard for their subjects or the public and not much regard for the monarchy itself.
    I know the queen is back in London and I am further stunned that she would give her consent to this. Despite the fact that people think she doesn't know what goes on, virtually everything credible printed about her suggests that she DOES know what's going on with her family members, keeps a close eye on things and doesn't hesitate to say something when she feels things need to be done differently.
    We read all the tales about the queen's wardrobe and jewelry suggestions to Kate, some pooh-poohed them as false but ... we saw those hemlines come down, we saw more statement jewelry so, maybe, the queen is still in charge.
    The other side of it is - why do they suddenly need a "second honeymoon"? He takes off in the middle of this "agriculture course" to go hunting in Spain - where Jecca Craig happens to also be - and she jets off for Mustique alone with the baby. Honeymoon? They haven't been married three years. The description of this as a honeymoon is probably to win public support but is just eyeroll-inducing and as eyeroll-inducing as the "maternity leave" that Kate has allegedly been on for the past 8 or 9 months.
    I really don't want to read into things but something about this whole deal smells rotten.
    William and Kate have their private staff PLUS a platoon of servants at Kensington Palace to take care of them and the baby, so please SPARE me the drama about poor little Kate being all worn out from taking care of George. That is absolutely a non-issue, no matter how hands-on or hands-off type of parents they are or are portrayed to be. They are surrounded by servants who look after their every need and after the baby's every need.
    One would hope someone with some guts will stand up -soon - to William and Kate and clue them in to just how bad this looks and how much public support they're losing. Someone suggested that with Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton's departure, things seem to have gone awry. I'd agree with that and I don't see anyone with the seniority to stand up to William.
    It's so sad because we all had such high hopes for William and then William and Kate together, that they really were a new breed of royals, down to earth and "just like us." This is about as far from down to earth and just like us as you can get.

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  51. wow lucky them getting to go to the maldives wish I was them! lol

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  52. Theresa, from Paris7 March 2014 at 08:18

    I agree with most of the comments.
    We can't forget that the couple are extremely wealthy and live differently from most of us. It is nothing for them to jet off and have marvellous holidays most of us can only dream off. And we who like the Duke and Duchess do not begrudge them that.
    But they cannot forget they are in the public eye, unless William steps down as second heir to the throne, which would be ridiculous. They should understand that they must balance their life a bit better, between engagements, which are their job, and enjoyment. This holiday, so far away, is badly timed.
    I always thought it a bit silly when commentators said the Duchess or the Duke were staying home to take of George. Of course they have nannies and staff, and a three hour absence from the child will not marr him for life !
    They both must be more careful and the Duchess must pick up on her visible engagements. She is 32 years old. It is time to start working seriously and give that impression. In her position, working behind the scenes, which she maybe does, is not worthwhile. Otherwise the backlash will be bad and that would be such a pity.

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    1. Stepping out of the line of heirs isn't so improbable, considering George V being the second son (king after his brother died unexpectedly, and also marrying his older borther's fiancee), and also George VI (after the abdication of Edward VIII). This also tends to reinforce why the person Harry marries is of such importance -she could easily end up Queen of England- and why Cressie is such a poor choice.

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  53. The DM is rubbish and yet people believe it right away. The rumour all started with closer. I do not understand why people are not checking out before bickering and thus almost ruining Charlotte's block. Three of four topics before this one there have been bickering and evil gossip on that blog. This is not what I will call constructive discussions. This blog used to be a haven of peace not so long ago. So sad!

    I find it strange that the media did not report that Kate's a guest at the farewell party for Sir Marcus Setchell, or her presence at the Welbeing of Women party. But when it comes to holidays...

    Keep up the good work Charlotte! You're doing an amazing job.

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    1. The Daily Mail does have terrible articles (with great photos) but this holiday has been reported in all the papers and on news sites and is not just gossip.

      There were no photos of Kate at this party and she attended as a private person, probably more to thank her ObGyn than for the charity.. That's undoubtably why there was little (not no) publicity. The retirement party and the benefit for Wellbeing for Women, are one party, not two. It would be a great charity for Kate to take on offficially. Let's hope she does. She needs more charities.

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    2. bluhare in Washington State7 March 2014 at 17:58

      It's not just the DM. This is being reported everywhere.

      And if you read the comments, a lot of people who never said a bad word about WK are having some real issues with this one.

      I think I speak for a lot of us when I say we want to be all googly eyed over them. I wouldn't be bothered posting here if I didn't feel the same way. Believe it or not, I got taken down like a champ on a hater blog the other day. I was being too nice. :)

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  54. I think it says a lot that even on this blog packed full of Kate fans, there is huge disappointment in W&K's decision to take another holiday. Don't get me wrong, there are lots of things I like about W&K and the way they are trying to make the RF less stuffy. However, I think that they either have little idea of how badly they are damaging their image, or they just don't care. We constantly hear reasons for Kate's paucity of engagements = she's not a full time royal, she's pregnant (hey, most women work a proper job right through their pregnancies) and now, she's on maternity leave. Let's be clear here, nobody expects Kate to get a 40 hour a week job but is it really to much to ask her to do even one engagement a week. It's getting so that when we do have a little flurry of Kate engagement's - and by flurry, I mean 2 or 3 - we know we won't be seeing her again for weeks. And as for William's course at Cambridge University, well out of the 10 weeks, he's managed to have a hunting holiday and now a week in the Maldives. I daresay I will be called a hater for this but I really am not. I love the RF and I want to be proud of W&K for being part of that but they are making it really hard. If for no other reason, they should be knuckling down and working and holding off on the holidays because like other countries, here in the UK we have seen jobs and services cut and cut and cut; seeing them swanning off on holiday when the working diary is pretty bare is just like sticking two fingers up to the British public. We may not pay them anything directly but believe me, the security bills alone are pretty extortionate and I for one, wondering why my hard earned taxes should go towards two people who apparently want all the privilege of being a member of the RF without any of the responsibility.

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  55. Eve from Germany7 March 2014 at 09:29

    I just flipped briefly through some of the comments - and, well, what can I say: I defended a lot of Wills&Kate´s decisions/doings so far, but this is it: if it´s true that they went on this holiday trip, I don´t get it/them anymore. All the time this "oh, someone has to be with George" and "really important duties like this course William has to attend" which kept them from doing more official engagements - and now, they go abroad and leave George behind (as a therapist, I can assure you, this is NOT what you do with a child that´s only a few months old - unless you want it to be traumatized. A child this age CAN NOT understand that Mummy and Daddy are on holiday - this child thinks it´s been abandoned, period. No Granny or Auntie or whoever can do anything about that.) If it´s true that they didn´t take George with them, I have to say I am appalled. I think everyone would have understood it if they had chosen to add a few days of rest AFTER their lengthy tour. But at this point - VERY bad timing! I don´t know who´s advising them on "marketing matters" - but whoever he or she is, should get the sack, immediately. Unless, of course, they decided this on their own. Whatever - it just doesn´t feel right. If I was in their position, I maybe would have chosen to spend some quiet time, too, but in Britain. There are plenty of estates, Sandringham or Balmoral, where you can have all the peace and quiet you need - with much less taxpayer money to be spent. If you are a future king and queen today, you have to know and be beware of the public opinion. We´ve all seen what happened to people who didn´t care or weren´t wise enough to make sure what they do can be understood by the public. You make just a couple of bad moves - and that´s it, the public all of a sudden is against you, and there´s not much you can do about it. See what happened to Prince Andrew. When I was young, he used to be the "Royal Darling", everybody loved him, he really was "Prince Charming". And look how he is seen today. I am afraid to say so, but William and Kate have to be careful, otherwise they can be very quickly in the bad books of the public and the press.... I mean, really, have they lost it?

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    1. Theresa, from Paris7 March 2014 at 20:10

      Very well said, dear Eve ! I couldn't agree more.
      And I find interesting your remark about the baby, especially as you are a therapist. I didn't know that. Do you specialize in children ?
      All best...

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  56. Maryland Moxie7 March 2014 at 10:52

    Fantastic! A private vacation before they take their public vacation to New Zealand and Australia! In between we'll see them on St. Patrick's day handing out shamrocks to people who will probably never be able to afford to go to either place. Fascinating stuff.

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  57. Hmm, all we have is a 'bits and pieces' of news, not a full coverage. So. there are so many thing that we don't know. I think its better if we leave it at that. So much as other people are 'innocent' of our business, we are 'innocent as well in term of other people's actions. We cannot judge.

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  58. I think they want us to be distracted by the 'second honeymoon' aspect/justification of all this...

    After William's recent hunting jolly to Spain with his ex-girlfriend, perhaps their advisers think it's better to offer another example of Kate's idleness and their joint disregard for the British public (at a time of flooding, increased reliance on food banks, public sector cuts, etc) than have us question the state of their marriage.

    As a British taxpayer, I think this holiday - after merely three 'work' engagements for Kate this year - is beyond appalling.

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  59. Note: They didn't just go on vacation and stay at a resort. If the Mail article is to be believed, they paid to rent out the entire 45 villa resort. And no, they didn't get it for free, they're not allowed to accept freebies. Oh, others would invade their privacy, poor dears it was their only option? These two are truly disgusting.

    Don't they always go skiing with the Middleton family in March or April? What will the reaction be when they come back from this exotic beach vacation, do one engagement, then go on another week holiday? A three week tour - with an incredibly light schedule for what it should be - doesn't negate the fact that these two are just plain lazy and tone deaf.

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    1. And now insults on this once wonderful blog which now looks like any other forum ie full of negativity, hatred, envy and jubilation when people think they are proven right. The public do not like William and Kate for what they are but for what they would like them to be. They have to be casted in the mould at the will of the public - not the people mind you as these are two different things - or they will be "destroyed". That's pure bullying and that's what is really DISGUSTING! Wait and see!

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  60. Helen from Wiltshire7 March 2014 at 13:41

    Blimey this really is a bad judgement call on William and Kate's part. Has William not had enough bad publicity this year over his hunting activities? This will just compound that in the public's eyes. I've been following the royal family since 1980 when Diana first appeared on the scene and I so desperately wanted Kate to pick up where she left off - genuinely caring about making a difference in this world and helping others through her work. But Kate carries out so few engagements and has so few patronages that it's starting to look like work is just anathema to her. My suspicions were raised on one engagement (I think it was last year) when a child asked her what it was like being a princess and her reply was something along the lines of "You get to go to some amazing places...but I haven't been to as many as William yet." Nothing at all about meeting great people, helping people out, doing good deeds or anything of that sort - just one long, all-expenses-paid round the world trip. Like many commenters above, I am becoming more than a little disillusioned with Kate's work ethic - it really needs to change and change quickly, otherwise she will be saddled with the 'Lazy' label for the rest of her days - not very helpful if you're the wife of a future king.

    I do have one little thought about March that I'd like to share with everybody though. I do wonder whether William and Kate will be lying low for the back end of March in order for the spotlight to fall on Harry and Cressida - is an engagement imminent do you think? My reasons for thinking this are as follows:

    1. Next year is a general election year in the UK, and in all my time of royal watching there has never been a big royal wedding in a general election year (the only ones have been the second weddings of Charles and Anne, which were low key). So if Harry doesn't marry this year, he'll probably have to wait until 2016 at the earliest, by which time he'll be nearly 32.

    2. Prince Andrew's engagement was announced in March for a summer wedding - also in the year before a general election.

    3. Hello magazine is reporting that Cressida has accompanied Harry to a charitable event for the first time. This is the sort of thing that happened in the run up to William's engagement.

    What do you all think? I must admit that it would help to alleviate some of my frustration with Kate if it turned out to be the case.

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    1. Portia from Chicago7 March 2014 at 15:38

      I think that Harry will marry in 2016 and I think that he will marry Cressida. I think that they are super cute together !

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    2. Jean from Lancs7 March 2014 at 16:46

      Cressida was at an engagement with Prince Harry this morning.
      I have never known that happen previously, when there has been no announcement of an engagement and my memory goes back to HM's engagement

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    3. bluhare in Washington State7 March 2014 at 20:19

      If I remember correctly, William and Kate walked into a wedding together (instead of arriving and leaving separately) right before they got engaged.

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    4. Jean from Lancs7 March 2014 at 22:13

      Yes---but they were already engaged it just had not been announced

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  61. I'm sure William and Kate will eventually hear about the criticism of this luxury holiday. They have their work cut out for them. Their image has been tarnished and the "natives" are not happy. I just read so many negative comments at the Daily Mail's website. I'm afraid if they appeared publicly, they would be "booed" by protestors. It's unfortunate. They desperately need a good public relations person who can is not afraid to be brutally honest with them.

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    1. Daisy714. They could spend all of the taxpayer's (Duchy's) money on PR people and it wouldn't matter. Until William and Kate are willing to listen to advice and be less selfish, it is all wasted effort.

      Delete
  62. Hi Anna from NZ the funds to support the Queen in her official duties come from the UK Parliament through the Sovereign Grant. For the 2014-2015 financial year the Sovereign Grant is £37.9m. It covers the costs of her household, maintenance of royal properties etc. If you google ‘How does the Sovereign Grant work?’ a whole lot of documents come up that explain how it works.

    The costs of the households of the Prince of Wales, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry are funded privately by the Duchy of Cornwall – this duchy was set up in 1337 for the specific purpose of providing an income for the heir to the throne. None of the day to day costs of the Cambridges' household are paid for by taxpayers so all the clothes, accessories, jewellery etc we all love to look at are paid for by Prince Charles from the income of the Duchy of Cornwall. Ditto with the renovations at Kensington Palace - taxpayers paid for the renovations to the public parts of the palace (mainly removal of asbestos) but the renovations to the private quarters were paid for privately. All of this is on the public record of various UK parliamentary committees.

    The protection officers are provided by the Royalty Protection Branch of London's Metropolitan Police.

    Hope this info helps.

    It's a long weekend here and we're off to the beach! This whole Maldives issue seems like a storm in a teacup to me.

    Hope everyone has a great weekend


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    1. Portia from Chicago7 March 2014 at 16:15

      The Duchy was land taken from the British people to pay for the heir of the throne. If this was not taken then it would be land belonging to the British people from which they would earn. So in that sense EVERYTHING that the royals have, have been derived from the British land and people and handed down to each generation of Royal. Instead of letting the British people and the government enjoy the Duchy of Cornwall Charles and his family own it, grow vegetables and fruit on it, make jam and sell it to the British people. Hilarious.

      As I explained EVERYTHING about the royals - their food, their clothes, their multiple homes, their accessories and jewels were taken either from the people of the UK or their many colonies ( the jewels came enmasse from India). Please don't delude yourselves on what you have agreed to pay for the Royals.

      The fact that your country continues to sign up for this is very interesting to me.

      Delete
    2. You really hate the Royal family don't you? Well at least we now know what your agenda is.

      Delete
    3. You speak the truth Portia. Also Charles only pays income tax when he feels like it - heavily reduced by 'expenses' first of course. He pays income tax on it, and not corporation tax, because it 'belongs' to Charles whilst he is Duke. But will William have to pay inheritance tax on it (worth 280m GBP)? You can bet not. So your family will have to pay inheritance tax on your little house - something you have worked your whole life to pay for - when they inherit, but royals are somehow exempt from such an awful tax. But the reason inheritance tax exists is to prevent consolidation of wealth, otherwise the wealthy just keep getting richer exponentially. Unfortunately the wealthy also know the tax system better than we do, and how to avoid paying tax. So technically Charles and his family aren't living off taxpayers money. But they certainly owe the people a hell of a lot of tax. Open up your accounts Charles Windsor!!

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  63. I've always thought, having a graduate art history education, that were I to have the luxury of money and time and a similar situation, I'd get more advanced degrees in the field, in anticipation of becoming the custodian of the Royal Collections. It could be done under the radar, and much of it on-line, in preparation of the position which I'd obtain at some future point. I think it's the apparent total lack of personal goals or growth or both inthe W&K which is concerning. If they have no personal goals, they also by extension have no vision or hopes for their countrymen.

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    1. bluhare in Washington State7 March 2014 at 18:03

      Could you imagine having an art history degree and having exposure to all the art you would have living in royal properties? My god, my house would be full of everything they'd let me get my hands on!!

      Delete
  64. I've read all the comments on this post this morning and have to say, I agree with both sides of the discussion.

    The Positive - none of us know what is going on between W&K behind closed doors. I think it is entirely possible Kate is suffering from depression since George was born. That could explain the few recent engagements and the "need" to go on this vacation, alone with her husband. I have two sons and very little time alone with my husband, so I can understand wanting to get away. I think it's also very possible George is a fussy baby, perhaps he has a medical condition that we don't know about. A friend of mine had a baby with reflux.....even with medication the baby cried almost constantly the first year of life. The comments W or K (can't remember which one) made after the Christening were something like "he was such a quiet boy, he normally isn't". No matter how many nannies you have, a crying baby in your home is nerve wracking. Perhaps Kate feels guilty because the baby is fussy, sick, etc. (not that it is her fault at all, but most new mothers I know feel guilty about these types of things).

    I would much rather see W&K take time away for to help their marriage, than to ignore the problem and hurt their marriage. I think the majority of readers on this blog would agree with me - we all want to see a successful, lifelong love affair between W&K.

    Negative - was it really necessary to go all the way to the Maldives to spend a few days alone? I don't think so. Was it really necessary to leave George behind? Could they not have rented another villa on the island and brought the new nanny along? Then they could have seen George but still had time alone.

    Other comments - even if the monarchy went away tomorrow, W&K would still be very wealthy. W received a large sum of money from his mother's estate when he turned 30, and K's family is doing quite well. I imagine they will continue going on luxurious vacations for the rest of their lives, however there will probably be less vacations as they get older due to increased workload (especially once they are King and Queen). I've said it on this blog before - W&K have many, many long years of engagements, speeches, charities, state dinners, etc. ahead of them, and their status can change at anytime due to the death of the Queen or PC (long live all of them!). I think it's good they enjoy this time together, while they can.

    The bespoke course W has been taking is exactly that - a private, one on one course that is tailored to the individual. So if W decided his wife needed a vacation, he rearranged his schedule. Or, this trip has been planned for some time and the coursework was planned around it.

    I hope we start seeing much more of W&K this year. I hope they have a successful tour next month, and when they return home, there are many more engagements for both of them individually and as a couple (and possibly a tiara or two along the way!).

    One final note - if I was Kate, I think I would wear a wig or somehow disguise myself when I traveled privately. We would have no idea they were on vacation if they had not been spotted at the airport. I actually think they have been on many of these luxurious vacations since their marriage that we don't know about it.

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    1. The idea that there is something wrong with Kate that prompted the trip also occurred to me. And the fact that the Maldives was chosen may have been because she needed no people around and the new resort that was not fully up and running was the closest place that would work. Appearances can be deceiving. Just because she made a handful of visits to places recently, and a few with William before that, doesn't mean she is well and functioning up to speed. We need to withhold judgment since we don't have all the facts. Remember the story of the blind men who each got hold of a different part of a donkey and made erroneous judgments based on that.

      Delete
    2. It also occurred to me that there might be something up with kate. However, if that is the case surely she would have people around to help and care for her at home. As someone who has suffered from depression I know the feeling of not being able to do a proper amount of work, but I doubt multiple holidays are the answer to any health issues she might have. However this is all speculation of course. We don't know what the real reason is for their holiday.

      Whatever the reason, their decision to go certainly doesn't do their image any good.

      Delete
  65. carrie from the rockies7 March 2014 at 15:22

    They definitely deserve private time together. But their timing is just off.

    My guess is that their getting in the last few relaxing moments before they go to work hard the rest of the year. They finally hired a new nanny and their vacationing again. Makes me assume its because they are planning to put in a lot of work later.

    I hope they do. I look up to kate and think she's amazing. I don't want that to change because she decided to slack off on her duty as princess of the united kingdom.

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  66. Portia from Chicago7 March 2014 at 15:22

    Today Harry spoke at WE day and Cressida was there. First of all, they are cute together ! Secondly, this is the sort of thing that William should be doing. Talking to the youth about public service. Actually doing public service. Not just going to galas and openings. Just as an aside, how many galas and premieres does Harry go to ? And exactly how many miles did he trek through the extreme cold for days at end - all for a cause? Is this not what the royals should be? They should be a league above everyone else in their actions. That is what monarchy is all about.

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    1. Helen from Wiltshire7 March 2014 at 17:34

      I totally agree Portia, this is exactly what the royals (including William and Kate) should be doing. I've always thought that Harry is the one of her boys who inherited the most of Diana's compassionate, touchy-feely genes. He seems to genuinely care about the causes he gets involved with - I especially love watching him when he's working with young kids in developing countries for his Sentebale charity. He totally gets what it's all about, in the same way his mother did, whereas I sometimes think William does it because he has to and would prefer to shut himself away from it all. In some ways it's a bit sad that William is destined to be king and not Harry - that would have been one amazing reign I think! - but then, maybe Harry is only carefree because he isn't the oldest and he knows he's destined never to be king, who knows?

      Delete
  67. Pam from Tennessee7 March 2014 at 15:23

    I agree with the readers who are astonished with the "vacation" announcement. That makes me wonder if there is in fact a real reason for the trip that might overshadow bad PR. Could it be the Duchess is suffering from post-partum depression? It would make sense and can be serious enough that a true change of place is called for. Just a thought.

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  68. I think that the whole thing is not of them having money on their own....it is on spending people's money (taxpayer's) on their luxuries life. Once somebody said that this is only one pound but making it times all the people from UK it makes a huge chunk of money. While they on vacation after doing nothing they take protection officers who are also paid from working people's money. I do not think it is fair. I know that I never will be princess but if I were her I would be more carefull with my steps and spending someone's money.
    Nobody blames for example stars for taking luxurious vacation for only one reason.....those are their money

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    1. carrie from the rockies7 March 2014 at 18:32

      Thatsva great point to think about. Maybe that's why she has hasn't donemuch. Shes still recovering from the after math of the bith.

      Delete
    2. Well, it is so easy live on poor working class shoulders. I am thinking about those mothers who cannot afford taking their kids even once a year on vacation, but who still need to pay for K:&W's trips. It means they do not give own kids but have to support lazy people. .

      Delete
  69. I am glad to know that Prince George is with the Middletons, if that is true, since they will miss him in April and he must feel at home with them. It seems a well planned break, except that William and Catherine have now made a good part of the journey to Australia, and will have to double back.

    However, I think that US posters, including me, should stop posting for a week, and see what this forum is like. I would wish to see messages only from the Queen's UK subjects and Commonwealth residents. The rest of us have too little real knowledge, and a skewed viewpoint that make us basically bags of wind here. We are fascinated by William and Catherine, but they are not our royalty.

    I also wish that Charlotte in future would censor asinine comments about the US president. This is not the place for right wing nonsense.

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    1. Helen from Wiltshire7 March 2014 at 17:18

      Please don't disappear Anonymous (or any other US poster) - even for just a week! It's great to have such varied opinions on this blog, from people all around the world. I don't think the British people should have a monopoly on our royals, you have just as much right to be fascinated by them as anybody else. (But do forgive us Brits if we grumble about paying their keep occasionally - as the Aussies would have it, we're a bunch of whingeing Poms at times!)

      Delete
    2. bluhare in Washington State7 March 2014 at 18:05

      If everyone agrees to a one week moratorium on non UK residents posting, I'll go with it.

      Delete
    3. carrie from the rockies7 March 2014 at 18:33

      Its an interesting suggestion but its a worldwide blog and that makes it interesting

      Delete
    4. the right wing is just as entitled to speak as the left wing- and I have heard plenty of your nonsense for the last six years- this may not be the forum but I defend my God given right by our Constitution to say what I want- "in the land of the free.....BECAUSE of the brave"

      Delete
    5. Theresa, from Paris7 March 2014 at 20:18

      Oh no, come on ! This blog is fun because we come from all over the world. I love the American point of views, from bluhare and all the others... And German and Brazilian, and French...
      Come on, boys and girls, this is our window of fun in a sometimes dreary world, isn't it ?!!!! Let's all enjoy it :-)

      Delete
    6. I'm glad to know you enjoy us - I was being mostly facetious, but really there does seem to be a lot of ranting from US posters, and what right do we have? OK, our fascination. But we need to remember that William is a future British monarch, not an international celebrity. We have little right to criticize what he and Catherine do with their time.

      I have never expressed a political opinion here, and never will. This is not the forum for it.

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  70. If they want to go on a vacation before a huge tour, then that's okay. It's only 3 months into the year and like some other people already commented, maybe their engagements are going to pick up. Even if they don't, it's not fair to judge them for their decisions. We don't know if Kate struggles with being a Mom or if she just felt she wanted to have some time alone with her husband. A tour is not a vacation for the royal family so they probably don't get to have a lot of time alone. They clearly value their marriage but are trying to balance the role that William was born into as well. I can't imagine how stressful that could be. I think Kate is doing just fine in her new role and she seems to be trying.

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    1. I do think it's fair to judge them because they are royalty and serve at the pleasure of the public. They owe a duty to the public, who help provide their lifestyle. William could always abdicate!

      Delete
    2. Only the sovereign can abdicate and William is not the king yet. He could only renounce his birth right. But what for? He has everything to make a good king. And after him comes Prince George and William can't renounce for his son or any other child he could have. So the only way for Harry to ascend the throne would be the deaths of both his brother and nephew(s). I do not think for one second that Harry would wish that. And he also made it clear that he had no wish at all to become king too and he hates the media much more than his brother and from his own words "they (the media) have no idea for how long I hate them". The two brothers are very close and both hunters (not only William) and complete each other wonderfully. They are both as much the sons of Charles and Diana. William will do his duty to the people when the time comes. Your hatred of William is really appalling and exagerated.

      Charlotte, I wish you a very nice week end and the best luck with your work. Keep up the good work with your fantastic blog. You're the best!

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  71. At the end of the day we will never know the reasons behind the trip-

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  72. Jean from Lancs7 March 2014 at 18:17

    If it is indeed true that the Duke and Duchess have gone on a "second honeymoon", in my humble opinion, it is to counteract the pernicious and libellous accusations (some on this blog) about Prince William's recent long-weekend hunting in Spain. Such accusations must be extremely hurtful to Catherine, but for some people that seems to be their intention.
    I note the anger of some US contributors when they feel their head of state, or his family is criticized, but seem to relish each new blog to give them the chance to tear Catherine to pieces.,


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    1. Very well said Jean!

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    2. They had to leave the UK to do that? Not so sure.

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  73. I am probably the only one who is excited about their vacation. The reason is, that I am going to the Maledives on sunday (same atoll) and maybe with extreme luck I`ll see them... I`ll post a picture if I do :D

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  74. This is absolutely ridiculous! I was a HUGE Kate (and William) fan but now? I am starting to question what the value of the Royal fam is??? And these last few moves of William seem more like something Charles would pull, rather than the son of Diana. VERY disgusted by the hunting and his leaving his "class" early for a luxury vacay.

    As for the whole Australia trip? They have to rest up before they go? Seriously? Excuse me for speaking my mind, but the majority of the agenda is like a personal vacation for them. I know they'll be "on" the whole three weeks, but still. Who are these people and what have they done with the real Kate and William? Or.....worse yet.....please don't tell us we were duped in the beginning!

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  75. i find it quite disturbing that they went on another vacation.She has help with the baby so I don't see why she cant do at least one engagement a week. why do ppl use decorating houses as an excuse..srsly ?? Ive always liked Kate's clothes and she seems like a nice person but seems like the questions about her work ethic were spot on

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  76. btw i love the blog and have tried to comment before but for some reason my phone wont let me

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  77. The image known in the US of the Native American sitting on his horse, gazing down at the valley of fractured beauty of the land he knew- tears creeping down his cheek- gives an idea of the kind of sadness I feel about the spoiling of this site. The place in history may not be comparable , but the source of the destruction is the same. We never revere so much as when it is lost.
    Charlotte said she would have to concentrate on school these few weeks and she may not have the time to edit these comments thoroughly. Please, this is a fan site. That means readers and posters are fans, which means supportive. This is not meant to be the comment section of a tabloid, where negative personal remarks are welcomed and expected. I don't care if you have been posting here since day 1, or if your ancestors built the first hovel in the UK: if you want to make negative personal remarks, go elsewhere.
    US posters will be happy to vacate this site if. UK posters give up right to comment about ,say, Brad and the Jennifers. On second thought, as is said in court, strike that last remark. It is snarky and mean-spirited.


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  78. Like others I was surprised to hear they were on holiday but feel a little sorry for them that if true , which I think it is , that it has only come to light due to being spotted coming off the plane. Many of the Royals take a break before embarking on a long overseas tour, When they toured in 2012 the holiday in France was not known about until the photos appeared when they were on the tour I wonder what would have been said if the public had been aware of the holiday at the time!
    Yes I think it is sadly another own goal and they are becoming increasingly unpopular with increasing speculation about them which is not doing the monarchy any good I feel it is time their P.R. did something about it and William listened.
    The course William is taking is a 10 week personalised course. The week he had off for his public engagements over promoting the Wildlife cause must have been factored in as it was known about before he went to Cambridge and I rather suspect this week was also allowed for as even this trip would have taken some planning. At the time we were told his course would finish at the end of March which taken from when he started the course is 12 weeks. It also means that he would have little time for a break before leaving for New Zealand bearing in mind all the final arrangements and briefings.
    I personally think it is important for new parents to have a few days away on their own together without their young baby to concentrate with one another my husband and I did when our first child was about the same age as George soon after I had stopped breast feeding and like William and Kate our son was looked after by grand parents we felt totally confident that he would be quite happy and safe as I am sure William and Kate feel the same with Kate's parents looking after George. Although my children are now grown up I can still remember how much my husband and I valued that time together after a very tiring time looking after our new born baby I think the first child is more stressful than the second and has more of an impact on the relationship between husband and wife than later children when one knows what to expect. With William away on the course in Cambridge they have spent very little time together since Christmas and I think it is a good thing that they have decided to have a week away from all the pressures of Royal life and I hope that they will receive good advice which they take on board to move forward as many hope they will after their tour for not only their sake but also for the future of the monarchy.

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  79. I have to admit that I find the trip to the Maldives a poor choice for W&K, but as previous commenters have stated we don't know what the full story is. Hopefully as suggested she is not suffering from depression and there is not some problem going on in their marriage! Having nannies and help at your disposal certainly doesn't mean that she is not having a difficult time adjusting- depression is an illness that does not take into account one's circumstances. That being said, I certainly understand the sentiment that they have a duty to take on engagements and represent the UK in a positive way.
    I do have to say however, that perhaps if this trip was really "needed" they could have enjoyed time together somewhere alone that would not cause so much upset. Certainly there are many properties owned by the RF. The Maldives location is certainly extravagant, and that's not doing them any favors.
    I don't get the whole testing the nanny theory- they certainly don't need to go on a weeklong vacation out of the country to do that!
    Also, I just wanted to say that I find this blog and the comments so interesting precisely because of the various perspectives given by commenters. As an American, I find it interesting to hear from everyday people from other countries, as opposed to hearing "what other people think" through those in the media, in regards to the image of our leaders and our country. It matters what other people around the world think of our President, not just us. Likewise, it matters what people from other countries think about the Royal Family, because like it or not they are a huge part of the image of the UK. To me, it's just fun to share perspectives with other people and hear what everyone thinks about a particular issue, engagement, or dress. :)
    Cate

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