Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Kate Loves: A Very Royal Proposal

It was September 2010 and everything was falling into place for Prince William. Following eighteen months on a number of courses he was "delighted" to qualify as a search and rescue pilot. The second-in-line to the throne had given much of his concentration to achieving his goal in pursuing a career in flying: "I absolutely love flying, so it will be an honour to serve operationally with the Search and Rescue Force, helping to provide such a vital emergency service.''

Indeed, it was a wonderful time not only professionally but personally for the prince. Based at RAF Valley on the picturesque Isle of Anglesey, he rented a farmhouse where he and his then long-term girlfriend Kate Middleton enjoyed the idyllic privacy they had both loved during their time at St Andrews. Like any other young couple, they were spotted at local cinemas, taking in the breathtaking views on the beach and enjoying romantic lunches at local pubs and restaurants.

The couple, who had met almost a decade earlier as students at St Andrews University had built a strong foundation over the years despite the difficulties of a relationship in the public eye. These difficulties had of course taken their toll, and in 2007 they broke up for a brief period. When they got back together, it was clear to many Kate was the woman William was going to marry. They had tried to be apart and it didn't work. They discussed marriage and knew they wanted to spend the rest of their lives together, however, the right time hadn't come along... Until now.

William decided the time had come when they took a holiday in Kenya with friends in October 2010. The Prince wanted to propose somewhere truly special; his love of Africa had been well documented since he first visited in 1998 with Harry and their family friends the van Cutsems. It was there he had first met the Craig family, who had turned their 61,000 acre reserve over to house a rhino sanctuary, now called the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy.

Lewa Wildlife Conservancy Facebook Page

William returned several times after, working with the Craigs, which is when he became involved with wildlife conservation charity Tusk Trust. After university, he took Kate there so she could experience the land which held a special place in his heart.

Lewa Wildlife Conservancy Facebook Page

Speaking about Africa for a 2010 Sky documentary William said:

"This place will hold a special place in my heart for the rest of my life. Africa's the perfect place to come. The locals haven't a clue who I am, and I love that when I step off the plane I'm like, 'Yes, I'm back.' I know I'm here to work, but you can't help feeling like that. Africa is my second home."

When they first flew in with friends, they began the safari by staying with the Craigs at Lewa Downs, located in the foothills of Mount Kenya. The group spent much of their time driving around the estate and admiring the elephants and rhinos.

Keen photographer Kate will have no doubt taken the opportunity to capture some of the stunning sights she saw on camera.

Lewa Wildlife Conservancy Facebook Page

It was an incredibly relaxing break for the couple who spent their evenings enjoying dinner and laughs with friends at the Lewa Safari Camp. Featuring large tented bedrooms with verandahs and full en-suite bathrooms, Lewa Safari camp offers authentic comfort for its visitors; cozy log fires in the sitting room are perfect for relaxing after a day in the Conservancy.

A glimpse inside the cosy "camp".

For the second leg of the trip, William and Kate travelled alone on a 24-hour stop over at Rutundu Lodge, overlooking Lake Rutundu - two wooden cottages nestled on the northern slopes of Mount Kenya, the second highest mountain in Africa, and a very tranquil and isolated area with stunning views.


The lodge itself is a world away from the formality of royal residences and royal life. The self-catering lodge does not have electricity and the four-poster bed was made out of tree trunks.


As they made their way to the lodge, Kate was unaware a somewhat-nervous William was carrying a very special piece of jewellery in his rucksack. The Prince would later recall in the engagement interview: "I had been carrying it around with me in my rucksack for about three weeks before that and I literally would not let it go, everywhere I went I was keeping hold of it because I knew this thing, if it disappeared I would be in a lot of trouble."

Upon arrival, the couple enjoyed a romantic walk and went fishing for rainbow trout. That night, William cooked dinner and they sat by a log fire sipping cups of tea.


It is believed it was on the verandah of the cabin William asked Kate to be his wife. There's also been reports the proposal took place at the nearby Lake Alice which sits in an extinct volcano. Whichever romantic location - a thrilled Kate said yes. Recalling the proposal in the engagement interview Kate revealed it was both romantic and unexpected. "It was very romantic. There's a true romantic in there. Because we were out with friends and things I really didn't expect it all."

Africa Safaris

William presented a thrilled Kate with his late mother's engagement ring: "It's my mother's engagement ring so I thought it was quite nice because obviously she's not going to be around to share any of the fun and excitement of it all - this was my way of keeping her close to it all."

Diana chose the large oval Ceylon sapphire ring surrounded by 14 diamonds at Garrards. Unusually, it was not a bespoke piece, though it has become iconic in the many years since, and it was a very special token of love on William's part to give the ring to his future bride.

After Kate accepted, the newly-engaged couple travelled back to Lewa. Before leaving, Kate wrote in the visitors book: "Thank you so much for a wonderful 24 hours! Sadly no fish to be found, but we had great fun trying. I love the warm fires and candle lights - so romantic! Hope to be back again soon."

Georgina Goodwin / Rurundu Lodge

Upon return, the secretly-engaged couple kept the big news under wraps for a while. After a short break in Scotland they were ready to tell family and friends. Kate recalled the moment she revealed the secret to her mother Carole:

 "I think as any mother would be she was absolutely over the moon. And actually we had quite an awkward situation because I knew and I knew that William had asked my father but I didn't know if my mother knew. So I came back from Scotland and my mother didn't make it clear to me whether she knew or not so both of us were there sort of looking at each other and feeling quite awkward about it. But it was amazing to tell her and obviously she was very happy for us.".

The rumour mill went into overdrive when a beaming William and Kate attended the wedding of William's close friend Harry Meade. Unusually for the couple, they arrived together. Kate looked stunning in a blue Issa dress and black jacket for the day.

The couple were all set to make the big announcement in early November, when the sad news of the passing of Kate's grandfather Peter Middleton came. He had been her last surviving grandparent and they were very close, so it was decided the announcement date would be postponed by a couple of weeks.

On November 16, 2010 the big announcement came...

And the rest, as they say, is history! :)


  1. Ana B. from Brazil26 August 2015 at 04:18

    Such a lovely post, Charlotte! Thank you!

  2. Smiling. ... Lovely


    1. Julia from Leominster27 August 2015 at 02:32

      Lovely post, Charlotte, thanks for your efforts.

  3. Linda of Southern California26 August 2015 at 05:45

    Thank you Charlotte, for the informative post.
    A real life fairy tale of a handsome prince and his beautiful & lovely princess :)

    1. Let us hope it has far more substance than a "fairy" tale. The Windsors have had too many "fairy" tales.

  4. Isn't it poignant that the Queen acceded to the throne while she was watching animals from a rustic treehouse in Kenya, and William and Kate became engaged during an animal watching trip - in a high, rustic lodge in Kenya. I have wondered whether the similarity influenced William's choice of a place to propose, since her acceptance meant that Kate would one day be queen consort. The pictures you have chosen are lovely, Charlotte, and it is sweet to remember how our favorite royal couple became engaged. They look so young in these pictures, and William had so much hair!

    1. Rebecca - Sweden26 August 2015 at 11:33

      Oh, what an interesting thought. It could be total coincidence or very thought through. We'll never know. But very interesting! :)

    2. What a neat comparison. Never really put the situations together, but maybe William has more of his Grandmother in him than people think or give him credit.

    3. Very interesting point, Anonymous 6:25. The Queen has been very important in William's life, especially after the death of Princess Diana. At the time, I found rather poignant, also if in contrast with the public aspect of the situation, that she wanted to stay away from public eye, to protect her grand-children in a terrible moment of their life.

    4. Maggie - Minneapolis27 August 2015 at 21:33

      To be honest, given that William doesn't like answering questions about becoming King because it means thinking about his grandmother and father dying, I don't think he (or the Queen) would associate Africa with a happy memory of her finding out she is now Queen. If anything, I imagine Africa is a tough spot for the Queen because it is where she found out that her father died, and I think William, of all people, understands the difficulty of that moment (rather than associating it with the poignancy of becoming the monarch).

    5. Maggie - Minneapolis,
      My response went to a different thread below. Here are a couple of links why "Africa" varies from country to country. In this particular case, here is Africa Star Diamond (may be the largest in the world from there/) and well resourced by the British Monarchy.

    6. Maggie - Minneapolis29 August 2015 at 02:59

      Anon 15 - I'm not trying to say the Queen hates all of Africa. I just was respectfully debating with a poster's thought above that William maybe proposed in Africa also because the Queen found out she was Queen there. My point was simply that I don't think the Queen thinks of that particular memory very happily - and I think William of all people (who cannot live his future until his grandmother and father die) understands that best, and thus wouldn't associate Africa positively in relation to the Queen's ascension to the throne. Maybe I'm not making any sense. It's entirely possible :) This certainly isn't important! I was just trying to broach an alternate view of how the Queen feels about Africa in terms of finding out she was Queen.

    7. I am sure, Maggie, that the Queen remembers that visit with sadness, though she has been back to visit the area at least once. She spends the anniversary quietly at Sandringham, where the king died. I was thinking of William, however. He has his own connection with Kenya, of course, and was there to take Kate to one of his favorite places. The comparison struck me as interesting because of the similarities and because his proposal set Kate on the way to becoming his queen.

    8. Julia from Leominster29 August 2015 at 05:51

      This interest in Africa is not uncommon among young people - I think William and Harry may just be part of that - William encouraged by his interest in animals - and Harry also with Diana's work.

      The queen has always seemed to prefer to holiday at one of her houses - it gives the impression of her strong love for her native country and country life but it may also come from the fact that she has had to do so many tours so early that travel - anywhere - is not a pleasure to her. She shows no interest in sunshine holidays like Margaret did. But she was at the tail end of a generation who didn't holiday abroad for pleasure so much - I do recall though she was very disappointed at her return to treetops because the animals had destroyed the forest and it looked so different. This was in the eighties as I recall. Id there was any feeling about the loss of her father connected with that - she didn't let it show.

    9. Julia,

      The Queen has commented in an interview that she so cherishes her times at Windsor and Balmoral as she has had so many different pillows (bedrooms) during the year. That was when she was traveling more obviously.

  5. A wonderful post that put the perfect finishing touch on my day. Thank you Charlotte for the continued class and grace you bring to this space. Your style is refreshing in a time when sensationalism sells. Keep up the great work and please know that you have many admirers who appreciate all that you do.

    1. Very well said Momstheword! I agree with each word you wrote (momstheword not for nothing...)

    2. Hear, hear!

  6. Tedi in California26 August 2015 at 08:45

    I love this post. Everyone wished them love and happiness, it was a joyous time for them. Thanks for the memories, Charlotte.

  7. I have always loved that blue Issa dress Kate wore to a wedding. I wish she would wear it again. It's a gorgeous color. Also I want her to wear it again so I can see what it looks like without the blazer. Does anyone have a stock photo of it or something? The neckline makes it look one shouldered and I'm so curious to see if it since it's one of her best dresses, imo.

    1. Rebecca - Sweden26 August 2015 at 17:28

      I highly doubt we'll se her in Issa again sadly, Kate looked beutiful in their clothes. But I understand why she doesn't wear it.

    2. That dress was bespoke, so that's why there's no images of it anywhere. Because it was made especially for Kate and she only wore it once, that we know of.
      Unfortunately Kate will more than likely never wear Issa again after it was bought by a member of the Al-Fayed family.

    3. Julia from Leominster27 August 2015 at 02:48

      I believe it may have been sold again but I agree that Kate is unlikely to go back to using the brand at this point. In her post on Kate Loves Weddings (a bit ironic these days) Charlotte said that blue dress was an Issa dress but it is very similar with the pleating to the Zara dress Kate wore right after her own wedding. Both are blue and pleated - I don't know if they are really the same or just very similar.

      The sale always struck me as an odd decision by both parties as it was a certainty that Kate would be lost as a patron and that loss would damage the brand - particlarly odd on the Fayed part.

      An anonymous wisely pointed out in the last post that there is a suggestion that the Queen Mum was partially (or more) responsible for the sale of the amethyst tiara. That has been put forth as possible although there is no certainty what happened except it appears to be gone from the family or dismantled. Thanks Anonymous for pointing that out.

    4. The Queen just once wore the amethyst necklace and earrings, in Portugal which has a purple order ribbon. But she wore them with her Girls of Great Britain and Ireland tiara. I don't know whether the rumor that the tiara had been sold originated from that. Perhaps the Queen did not like the tiara, but I have seen mention of a possible sale by the Queen Mother. It was Queen Mary's tiara; apparently she had given it to the Queen Mother when she was queen consort. I am not at home, but when I return I will look for more information.

    5. Maggie,
      Africa is one whole continent as you know; varied in cultures, natural resources, history, climate, politics etc. She found out about her father’s death while touring on duty and Kenya/East Africa might have been one of the countries on her list. May be her own biography written by herself might shade some light on how she felt in associating the place with pessimism and too subjectively. Anybody could be anywhere and receive bad news. Others might argue, that is where she became a Queen instantly. Of all royal establishments, the British monarchy including the Queen and their ancestors might have had great benefits out of some of their former colonies ( think diamonds, who would hate a place that has enormously beautiful gems, animals, flowers, some black gold/oil,leather/you name it.

      William had said he likes it there. Well, different places other than one’s own can be adventurous and sometimes soothing in climate and environment, or whatever his taste. Your analogy is assuming William hates UK because he heard the news of his mother’s death in Scotland (n much smaller Geographical scale).

    6. The Queen had the necklace and earrings in her possession, or borrowed them from her mother for the Portugese state dinner. But they have been seen on Anna Wintour in recent years, so they too were eventually sold.

    7. Julia from Leominster28 August 2015 at 07:13

      I believe we may be in a state of amethyst confusion here. The necklace the queen wore in Portugal is the Kent amethyst necklace - checking the Court Jeweller - it remains in the royal collection. The tiara and necklace that were sold or disposed of were a different set belonging to Queen Mary and purchased by her (amethysts used to be worn for mourning.) The two necklaces do look a lot alike but are apparently different although you could have fooled me. The only difference I possibly see is that the diamonds circling the amethysts on the Kent necklace are a bit thicker - but it could be a photographic illusion. The link is below.

    8. Thanks Julia,

      We don't "follow the money", we follow the bling.

    9. Thanks, Julia. I need to look at the necklaces on my home computer in a couple of days.

    10. Julia from Leominster29 August 2015 at 05:53

      Very true - I confess to having a fascination for what brooch the queen chooses to wear - very odd but we all do have our peculiar points.

    11. Julia, :)

      That is the FIRST thing I look for when the Queen is out and about and that is what BROOCH is she wearing today and why. She sometimes correlates the brooch to the event in some way, like wearing the lovers knot brooch to William and Kate's wedding and then the Cullinan whopper for her Jubillee service at St. Paul's.

      You are not alone, girl. :)

      fan of brooches

    12. I think the whole amethyst mystery can be simply explained by the fact that the people involved with that Jewelry were of the era when amethysts were worn in mourning, as someone mentioned earlier. Sad, that they didn't stop to think, or realize, in these instances, that social mores and fashion change.

  8. Talk about a blast from the past!!
    I actually learned something I didn't know. I always thought Kate lived in London when she and William got engaged, I heard lots of reports saying that she did, and there were always pictures of her leaving her flat.
    So I didn't know she was already living with William in Anglesey.

  9. Rebecca - Sweden26 August 2015 at 11:33

    What a beautifully written post, Charlotte! Absolutley adorable and sweet. You are so good at this! And a very nice and "THEM" proposal!

  10. Imagine their excitement in the time between proposal and announcement. They must have gotten a lot of satisfaction having such big secret from the media ;)

    1. The way they, very uncharacteristically, walked into the church together at Harry Meades wedding, I think they might have gotten some satisfaction keeping the news from the media for awhile. They knew that their walking into the church together would start speculation. It is like they were playing with the media.

    2. Like Kate wearing the green dress with the peace sign fabric when she and the Queen and the other senior royals had a cocktail hour for the media.

    3. What surprised me about the engagement interview was how Kate commented that there was a "true romantic there" like she was surprised at how he set the whole engagement thing up. When, in reality, William has taken Kate away on many romantic getaways, including Tam Na Ghar lodge on Balmoral estate where he had some extensive remodeling done to accommodate and pamper Kate. Like installing a jacuzzi, etc. He took her there often during university days, apparently, and to other getaways there also. So it surprised me that she seemed surprised by that. She seems to be one of the most pampered women I know of. (That's not a bad thing.)

      Ann from San Diego

  11. Thank you Charlotte for such a sweet post. A lovely way to start the day.

  12. Informational as always! Thanks Charlotte!!

  13. Tedi in California26 August 2015 at 14:34

    What a lovely remembrance. From the earliest pictures of Kate, I always thought she was so special, and of course so beautiful. They remain a lovely couple.

  14. So after he took the much-guarded ring out of his rucksack and gave it to her, what did they do with it between that point and the official announcement?!?! Can you imagine receiving THAT ring and then not be able to wear it. I couldn't keep my eyes off mine when it was newly given. Really, what did they do with it? Does anyone want to guess? Jokingly, I can see William saying "so glad it's yours now, you'll have to take care of it while it's off your hand." Did Kate put it in HER rucksack and off they went? Fun to think about.

    1. Rebecca - Sweden26 August 2015 at 17:29

      Hahah, funny! I guess she probably wore it a lot at home!!

    2. AHAHAH very true... I will not sleep tonight thinking of the poor Kate with the hot potato in her hands!

    3. Maybe on a strong chain around her neck?

    4. Anon @ 15:16,

      Being the practical person that I sometimes am,
      I would have immediately had at least two replicas made, with man-made sapphires and
      cz's if necessary, and I would have been wearing one of those daily and perhaps wear the real one for royal events.

      She could have even had a replica made with a real Ceylon sapphire and diamonds. Still beautiful and just like the real one except without the irreplaceable provenance.

    5. Good idea, but she couldn't even wear a fake between the time it was given and the announcement.

    6. Anon @ 20:57,

      Why not? A call to Garrards and they would deliver that to her within days.

    7. She couldn't even wear a fake because they kept it quiet until engagement was officially announced. If she wore the real or fake before the announcement, people would know they were engaged. Just wondering what they did with it after it was given and before announcement since William seemed so nervous to have such a precious item in his rucksack.

    8. That window of time aside,

      I think you get my point about wearing a stand in ring on a day to day basis.

  15. Charlotte this is an amazing read!! I never knew the little details that went into the proposal,,,It was lovely revisiting their engagement,,,Thank You!!xoxo

  16. What a perfectly beautiful post Charlotte. Thank you so much.

  17. What a great post and a great way to remind ourselves of the start of their fairy tale. It's also a great way to turn away from the negative publicity of the recent stories regarding weddings. It seems like perfect timing for some research I was doing recently. The stories about Kate not attending weddings since married I knew were false as they have gone to weddings both together and separate since they were married but I wondered how many they really were. So off I went to research the internet and this blog. Below is the result, and I only added a comment if Kate was not in attendance, not the ones that she attending without William. Bare with any misspellings.

    Starting with 2010 - Harry Meade wedding when they were engaged seemed like the best starting point
    1 - Jan 2011 - Aubrey Fletcher & Louise Stourton
    2 - Apr 2011 - Their wedding
    3 - Jun 2011 - Sam Waley-Cohent and Bella Balin
    4 - Jul 2011 - Mike Tindall and Zara
    5 - Sep 2011 - Tom Sutton and Harriet Cothurst
    1 - Apr 2012 - Hannah Gillingham
    2 - Jun 2012 - Emily McCorquodale
    3 - Jun 2012 - Alice St John
    4 - Sep 2012 - Thierry Kelaart
    1 - Mar 2013 - Mark Tomlinson and Laura Bectolsheimer (Switzerland)
    2 - Apr 2013 - William van Cutsem and Rosie Ruck Keene
    3 - Jun 2013 - Thomas Van Straubensee and Lady Melissa Percy (William and Harry Only)
    4 - Sep 2013 - James Meade & Lady Laura Marsham (William and Harry Only)
    There were two more reported in the media that both William and Kate were thought to attend but neither one showed and those were Serena Nikkah/Peregrine Hood and Rupert Finch/Natasha Rufus Isaacs
    1 - Mar 2014 - Charlie Budgett and Lucy Meade
    2 - May 2014 - Guy Pelly in Memphis (William Only)
    3 - Jul 2014 - Alexander Vaulkhard and Sarah Nicholson
    4 - Sep 2014 - Charlie Gikes and Anneke von Trotha Taylor in Italy (Harry and the Middletons only)
    5 - Sep 2014 - Robert Davies-Jones and Victoria Inskip (William and Harry only)
    6 - Dec 2014 - Tom Eaves and Libby Keir

    Charlotte your blog was a tremendous help in this research, especially the Kate Loves Wedding article from Mar 2013. It got me thinking though and I would like to provide a suggestion. Some of the Kate Loves articles were done earlier, some several years ago like jewelry, weddings, fashions, etc. Would it be possible for you to consider an update to some of these older loves posts to bring them current?

    1. Well done Julie! I wrote a similar post on From Berkshire to Buckingham blog - The Mystery of Missing Kate -but didn't research as thoroughly as you have! Mind, I was addressing the Daily Mail's assertions and Kate's reasons for missing various social events.

    2. Julia from Leominster27 August 2015 at 02:52

      I believe you didn't mention a Fellows wedding in there in September of 2013 - both Kate and William missed it (that may be one of those weddings you're alluding to) which seemed odd because it took place in London and they are close enough to the Fellows to have one be a godmother. Harry attended it.

      Otherwise, a very good list. I do think Kate's absence causes more trouble to the recent couples than her presence would - she certainly didn't feel that way before her own marriage - but that's just my opinion.

    3. Julia from Leominster27 August 2015 at 03:14

      Think you missed another one too - the Adam Middleton wedding Kate attended without William - I believe in June 2014. The location - the Dorchester - was controversial.

    4. Julie from NC
      Good defense that comes from well-intentioned persuasion of the heart is very well worth precious time. You completed a labor of love, and quite some work. The world’s reputable as well as tabloid media and some members of the public’s cut off time after child birth seems about 3 months maximum. It seems that wedding and its details gave people and media a good example to their advantage.

      I hope at some point in the near future W&C give an interview in their Norfolk home; Introduce their new community to the world/narrated by the interviewer/how they feel about living distant/family life/on and on/ occasionally showcasing the children live in action. The same journalist Tom who interviewed them might be able to get one again. If there is concern for safety of their home in Norfolk, do the interview in KP while narrating on Norfolk as well.

      If they continue fading from the public's eyes, then some coordination from BP/SJP and the couple's court had been broken somewhere and somehow. The same energy,operative and magic that presented them to the world from their engagement until after the Asian tour had gradually faded, granted starting a family and settling has its own life.

    5. Thanks Edythe, Julia and Anon15. It took about 3 days to get everything together.

      Julia - I had the wedding in Jun 2014 for Adam Middleton and Rebecca Poynton but it just got missed when typing in my comment. I didn't have anything in my notes or found any mention of a wedding in Sep 2013 for a Fellows. Maybe you could find more info on that one?

    6. Julia from Leominster27 August 2015 at 18:31

      Julie - here's one of the links.

      I found William's and Kate's absence from this wedding which was held in London extremely odd - but of course we never know the family dynamics. This is one instance where Kate had no worries about out-shing the bride - which I find just a bit egotistical on her part (to my mind, a good royal never considers that anyone would want to look at her rather than the bride - it's part of their magic - a kind of charade between them and the public.) The bride here was quite stunning. Along with the christening of Zara's baby, it's one of the odder of Kate's absences.

      I noticed too William's absence at the wedding on Kate's side although that could be due most likely to the controversial choice of location at a very bad time when a boycott was ongoing. But it could be that Willaim and Kate are one of those couples who are reluctant to attend events on "the other side's" part of the family. I know such couples - some even insist the partner write all thank yous for his/her own side - and I was always adament that Mr Leo and I would not be of that number -even if it has led me to attend some quite dull events where I didn't know many people.

    7. Julie,

      Did William and Kate attend Adam Middleton's wedding? Isn't Adam Middleton a godparent to Princess Charlotte?

    8. Oh, that's right. Kate did attend Adam's wedding and there was some controversy at the time about the hotel.

    9. Maggie - Minneapolis27 August 2015 at 21:31

      I think it's fairly clear that Daily Mail has it backwards - Kate attended more weddings in the first two years of their marriage than she did after that period. She obviously had a child at the end of that period, so it seems clear that becoming a mother had something to do with attending less weddings, however generally, it is odd for someone with help to go from attending so many weddings to attending so little, even if they did have a child, because your interests don't just change because you had a kid. Most mothers don't almost completely end their social lives out of choice, but rather, out of necessity (which isn't the case for Kate since she has a full-time nanny). I'm not saying women don't change their focuses after having a child, but Kate has done almost a complete about-face after having children. There's a difference between decreasing your social activity and almost completely ending it. A toddler goes to sleep so early that he probably won't even notice that his mother is gone for a wedding. And she clearly is okay leaving him/them for shopping, or tennis. So my guess is that Kate never really enjoyed going to these weddings, but before marrying William, felt more of a need to show her face at high society events (as a sign that she was part of that group of people). But now that she's married into the royal family and has provided heirs, she probably feels more comfortable with her position in the upper echelons of society and thus doesn't feel the need to assert herself as one of "them."

    10. Thanks Julia for the link. I think the reason I didn't find the Fellowes wedding in my research is that according to the article, it was just Harry that went and William/Kate were both not present.

      Anonymous - you are right. It was a controversial wedding due to the location and there was quite the uproar for Kate being there. She arrived in the parking garage (underground car park) with 9 POs. It was controversial because of it's owner, the Sultan of Brunei, had recently imposed a series of harsh Islamic anti-gay laws, sparking a worldwide boycott of the Dorchester Collection hotels.

    11. Rebecca - Sweden27 August 2015 at 23:36

      Maggie, maybe she has reprioritised what she want's to put her energy on. We have heard multiple times how Williams clique wasn't the nicest to her, so maybe she said enough is enough and doesn't waste time on people that give her negative energy? Who knows.

    12. Maggie - Minneapolis29 August 2015 at 02:53

      Oh I agree Rebecca! That was kind of what I was trying to say (perhaps not very clearly on my part, sorry!). My point was that I get the feeling that Kate may have never enjoyed those events to begin with (probably a lot to do with how she was treated, as you've said), but maybe felt like she had to go because she was trying to establish herself in that social circle (and maybe felt more of a need to accompany William because she thought he'd want that and she was trying to maintain their relationship).

    13. Maggie - Minneapolis29 August 2015 at 02:56

      But yeah, I just don't think the excuse of not wanting to outshine the bride makes much sense (if that is indeed Kate's reasoning). She clearly didn't care about that one bit before, and also, while Kate may "outshine" the bride in the papers, there's no reason to think that she would do so at the wedding itself as well. For one thing, these weddings involve mostly very rich, upper-class people - it's not that exciting for them to see Kate like it would be for most of us. And they may not even notice her sitting during the ceremony.

  18. Charlotte, you are such a good story teller... I knew the story, but it was so nice to hear it again from you. Thank you.

  19. Loved reading this. Love the royals. William and Kate are the perfect couple.

    1. Let's all pray that they can make this marrige work and not end up like his parents. William's words during their engagement interview was, we are looking forward to spend the rest of our lives together. And that he has learned from past. So if he stays with what he said in the interview, if he remembers, he will be a faithful loving husband.

  20. Stunning photos of Africa. The picture of William at the beginning is one of the best I have ever seen of him. I don't
    recall seeing it before and appreciate your including it in your story.
    And a charmingly told story it was.
    I thoroughly enjoyed the entire post. Thank-you, Charlotte!
    One tiny question for me-why ivory tusks were used as decoration on the coffee table at the resort where W&C
    stayed? I can't imagine William approving of that, even then. Perhaps that was not the actual place they stayed?

  21. Sorry, I just commented on your charming post, but I can't remember if I signed it. 99

  22. Most Enjoyable to read. My Favorite part of History :) Thank you so much Charlotte!!!

  23. Rose from Montreal, Canada26 August 2015 at 23:40

    Wow Charlotte thanks so much for the trip down memory lane. Thank you also for filling in a lot of the blanks I was unaware of. You are a real treasure.

  24. Charlotte,

    Beautiful images of Africa, nature, a lovely cabin, young love and sweet story.
    Oh those lions...lucky are those who can tame them.

    Good luck to W&C and their children.

  25. Thank you, dear Charlotte for this lovely Royal Couple Love Story! I especially loved the close-up of Princess Diana’s ring. It’s so beautiful, especially the thought behind it. Stunning pics of Africa! Thank you.

    1. Anon @ 00:09,

      I love the story, told by Ingrid Seward, from Majesty magazine of how, when presented by Garrards with a tray of rings from which to choose, Diana said that her choice was simple, she said, "I chose the biggest one."

  26. I think it's touching and a little sad, that William's first reason why he adores Africa, is that nobody knows who he is.
    My impression of William is that he is extremely uncomfortable in his status as a royal, and his biggest wish is just to be a regular person. Unfortunately, he is stuck with his destiny. That is why he needed to take the air ambulance job, so he could be more like the rest of us, and actually have a job. I sympathize with him. I think he sees the handwriting on the wall, that British royalty is becoming more and more irrelevant, and even a bit of a joke, and, By the time he takes the throne, it will be even more so.
    Being an american, this is just my perception, but if people are so concerned about Will and Kate performing royal "duties" it shows that the British are desperately trying to find these people SOMETHING to do in order to justify all the attention and funds that are lavished on them. Their "duties" consist of showing up at ceremonies and charities, just to be SEEN, and wave and take flowers. I think William has a distaste for all of that.

    1. It would be difficult but he is not stuck. Example A; Duke of Windsor. He could also choose a religion other than CoE (or has that been removed as a reason to strike you off the succession?).

    2. Rebecca - Sweden27 August 2015 at 17:32

      Well, he's very stuck though bluhare. Unless he wants to have the fall of monarchy and the dissapointment of his whole family on his shoulders. I mean, he's legally not stuck, but as close he can be to stuck. He wouldn't wanna put it on Harry or George either. So yes, he has a way out if he's a selfish prick, but he in no way seems to be that so in a way he is stuck.

    3. One line I remember from the interviewer’s /Tom B. input is, “lots of opportunity to change people’s lives” addressing Kate in his conversation. Their selection of an outstanding management and leader can design that into coming to fruition based on their interest strength, the public’s mood and complaint/request. The saying “it is what you do with what happens to you/or given to you” (in this case given a complex silver spoon) has some truth in it although life and choices can be much more complex than that.

      Kate seems to be drawn to children, and that interest might find her accomplish and apply her strength in a bigger way. First parenting is challenging enough, and she is at that introductory time of her own.

    4. Julia from Leominster27 August 2015 at 19:14

      (Two parts) Just because William and Kate are proving to be the best advocates for royal working - something they need to consider very seriously because their ability to demonstrate the value of royal work will be of infinite value to George especially - far more than any parks and petting zoos they might take him to - doesn't mean the work isn't of value. One of the things that have made me truly angry about William - and yes, I am using the term "angry" is the way he has degraded royal work by his insistance of the superior value of being a helicopter pilot - the more he makes royal work sound like all ribbon-cutting bouquets and tree-planting, the more he degrades it's value and insults family members who do dedicate themselves to this work. I don't think he means to do this - but this is the impression his actions are creating.
      Royal work is extremely valuable - it does at least three things and I'm sure readers here can think of more.It brings attention to the charities royals visit and otherwise participate in helping. This is a huge benefit to charities - particularly small ones. A royal who does a lot of charity work as Diana did (and as I believe she would expect her sons to be carrying on) can bring a lot of favourable publicity to charities - but even a less well-known royals name is a huge cachet to fund-raising.
      It encourages volunteerism - more important than ever when so many women work and there is less time than ever for people to devote to volunteering. A royal can be a huge boost - Kate by just a couple of visits brought a lot of attention to volunteering for the Scouts - some may not carry through - but many people will find they love it and will carry on when they might not have thought to do so.
      It brings unmeasurable cheer, comfort, support, and encouragement to both those helped by charities and for especially those working or volunteering for them. These people are often unsung and have dull and difficult jobs.So I think royal work has tremendous value but it can also be dull for the royal. The problem with William is that he seems adrenaline driven - he needs excitement. I don't find his job as a helicopter particularly worthy - there are others pilots who could do it just as well and patients - such as that murder victim who died - don't care who is flying the craft. However only a royal like William can contribute to the work I described above - his abilities as a prince are unique - as a pilot - they are not.

    5. Julia from Leominster27 August 2015 at 19:16

      As for Kate - I wish William had broken with her a bit longer so she could have found out what her interests in life are - I don't think she really has a particular enthusiasm that lights a fire within her - and if we know what she would have done with her life - been a teacher as she has suggested or working full time in her family business - she might have more focused goals. She clearly loves children, sailing and scouting but some people - such as Diana - seemed to have a true calling for helping that I don't see in Kate - I doubt if she would have been a nurse or a counsellor. She has married into a job where this is expected of her and I think she if she really found the right focus - the work complaints would start to die away. It's not just a question of number of engagements - it's having a purpose to them. She seems to see the work as a chore - to be put off as long as possible, not something she is eager to get back to, and this sense of exhaustion reflects on royal work in general.
      There are many young princesses and queens who have found their goals - look at Rania's pleading for moderation and work with women, Mette-Marit's and Maxima's important speeches, Mary's visit to Cambodia. Charlene's swimming work. All sorts of excuses can be made but basically, William and Kate just don't seem to have these sorts of interests - I hope for their sake but most of all for George's sake, that they discover what suits them best - now with Harry constantly in Africa, and no other young royals active -royal work does seem like a snooze that only old pensioners do. It needn't be - it could be seen as important and vibrant but only with better support from those who can best be it advocates.

    6. Barbara,

      During a recent interview in New Zealand, Harry elaborates clearly on exactly why he AND William want "normal" jobs. Harry offers nice insights into other things also. Very fun interview.

      Except for his penchant for partying, Harry rocks.
      He is handsome, very articulate, funny, compassionate, considerate and quite sexy, IMHO. :)

    7. I caught that same vibe and found it strange that he would vocalize in that way. Perhaps there is something in British culture that makes it okay to loathe the land you live in? What is so difficult about everyone knowing who you are? You never hear any other royal - in any country - complain about it. Of course he said it as a youth and didn't think very deeply about the consequences and how that could be used against him to remove the family from their position. I agree with bluhare - he is not stuck - he can abdicate or the people/parliament can make a change with or without his consent. The funny thing is, you never hear a family say, oh, thank goodness they got rid of our royal status! Just ask all the ones that did have it removed.

    8. Rebecca - Sweden27 August 2015 at 20:58

      Wow, Moxie. Have you been known everywhere? Felt like you can't leave the house because you don't know who will be taking pictures? Been afraid that people trying to be your friend are just interrested in your postion? Afraid that anything you say will end up in the papers?

      What is so wrong with him liking being liked for what he does and who he really is? That is what most people search in life. Finding people who like you for who you are and support you even exept the things you aren't. I think it's honorable that he doesn't just wanna rely on his name, that he sees value in having qualities that makes him likable even outside his title.

    9. Maggie - Minneapolis27 August 2015 at 21:15

      Rebecca - people have to make decisions all the time in which they have to choose things that may incur their family's disappointment. Obviously not everyone has to make a decision that may or may not be a proximate cause of the fall of the monarchy, but I think it's really letting William avoid responsibility to say that he's stuck. I think it's more selfish of him to take public funding and not pay it back (through royal "work") than it is to say that he doesn't want to be a royal, and give up his place in line to the throne. I mean, if he does this job and then becomes a full-time working royal, then it's maybe not selfish, but if he continues this half-royal, half-"normal" business for more than a few more years, yes, I definitely think it's more selfish to do that than to just give up his spot in the line to the throne. Like I said, everyone has to make decisions that risk disappointing people - it's just a fact of life. A similar situation is when someone's family has had a family car business for generations and this person does not want to take over running it because they want to do something else. They have to face disappointing their family and/or risk losing the business in order to do what they want. William isn't special in this conundrum.
      The only special thing is that William's right to the monarchy is a real privilege. I find it interesting that you think him giving up his right to be King is selfish - I see it as giving someone else the chance to exercise that immense privilege. For goodness sakes, he has a future of guaranteed financial and physical security and in return, he has to do a very, very easy job with a lot of support and vacation-days. If his situation is what we consider to be "stuck," then my god, I'd like to be stuck real bad. I can understand why he may find it boring, but if he's going to try to play the middle ground of being a royal but trying to have a normal job for as long as possible, then he should try and live like a normal person instead of a royal with huge houses and lavish vacations. Until he does that, I don't think he deserves any pity for being "stuck." And I don't think he would be "putting it on" someone else if he gave up his right to the throne. I think he'd be affording someone else a great privilege.

    10. Maggie - Minneapolis27 August 2015 at 21:22

      I agree with Julia that I think Kate needs some focused interests, and that some more time apart from William would have helped her identify those. She has just shaped her entire life around William, and his needs.
      I do think she has a serious interest in being a good wife and mother, but unfortunately, even though the monarchy is in itself a rather old-fashioned institution, even princesses of the UK are expected to play a bit more of a modern role in royal life. Wanting to be a good wife and mother is obviously a noble goal, but she married into the wrong family if that's her only major goal in life. I hope William (and the other royals) encourages her to carve out her own little niche in public work. My biggest fear is that they will be so intent on avoiding "another Diana situation" that they will never realize just how lucky they were to have Diana and her desire to help others and not just play a supportive role.

    11. The British monarchy the way it is seems to have a symbiotic relationship with its citizens. In its modern version, William’s marriage to Middle class Kate in a way is marriage to the general public (who adored his mother). The Monarch might be above politics, but Monarchy is politics too by any other name. In the old days of territorial expansion, amassing wealth and war heroism the monarchy and its immediate company prospered, influence d and mattered. The modern version is a work in the process.

      Of modern inherited monarchy, Jordan is facing the huge Syrian and parts of Iraqis spillover of refuges and the threat of ISIS, Queen Rania is becoming more and more visible and out spoken. It is probably easiest to be members of the British family than most other countries except may be Netherlands, Denmark and Sweden.

    12. Sometimes being a selfish prick isn't such a bad thing, Rebecca. :P I do agree with you that it's not as simple as saying "I quit", but there is a way out if he can't cope with the life. One could argue that the monarchy was actually strengthened by not having Edward VIII complete his reign, especially after all the information about his being a Nazi sympathizer and would have been a puppet king had the Nazis won the war came out.

      But I certainly don't want to imply that it's a simple thing and would be no big deal. It most definitely be a big deal and would certainly rock the monarchy to its core.

    13. Rebecca - Sweden27 August 2015 at 23:43

      I understand you Maggie. I don't agree at all though. I don't care one "beep" about how much money or security they got. People without money think it solves everythig. It really doesn't. It takes away some troubles, yes. But it can add some. Also, the way their money comes with "strings" (that people bring up all the time) must make the money almost feel cursed. I don't think people can realize what a wierd life they actually live. It's the definition of gilded cage. Yes, they have alot of money. But that money makes alot of people feel like they have the right to decide how they should live their life, how often we should see their children etc. They are not just normal rich people. They are rich people with a ton of strings attached. But this might be that I burned myself out trying to live up to expectations. And I was just a high school studen with no more worries in the world than to study. I had no money problems, no job etc. No "real" troubles. And that was too much pressure for me. So I might be more sensitive than others to what pressures they're feeling. I have money enough to live comfortably and that doesn't help at all. Money only does so much.

    14. Julia from Leominster28 August 2015 at 00:18

      I think my above comment makes no sense because the first half was lost. For what it's worth, here it is.

      Just because William and Kate are proving to be the best advocates for royal working - something they need to consider very seriously because their ability to demonstrate the value of royal work will be of infinite value to George especially - far more than any parks and petting zoos they might take him to - doesn't mean the work isn't of value. One of the things that have made me truly angry about William - and yes, I am using the term "angry" is the way he has degraded royal work by his insistence of the superior value of being a helicopter pilot - the more he makes royal work sound like all ribbon-cutting bouquets and tree-planting, the more he degrades it's value and insults family members who do dedicate themselves to this work. I don't think he means to do this - but this is the impression his actions are creating.
      Royal work is extremely valuable - it does at least three things and I'm sure readers here can think of more.It brings attention to the charities royals visit and otherwise participate in helping. This is a huge benefit to charities - particularly small ones. A royal who does a lot of charity work as Diana did (and as I believe she would expect her sons to be carrying on) can bring a lot of favourable publicity to charities - but even a less well-known royals name is a huge cachet to fund-raising.
      It encourages volunteerism - more important than ever when so many women work and there is less time than ever for people to devote to volunteering. A royal can be a huge boost - Kate by just a couple of visits brought a lot of attention to volunteering for the Scouts - some may not carry through - but many people will find they love it and will carry on when they might not have thought to do so.
      It brings unmeasurable cheer, comfort, support, and encouragement to both those helped by charities and for especially those working or volunteering for them. These people are often unsung and have dull and difficult jobs.So I think royal work has tremendous value but it can also be dull for the royal. The problem with William is that he seems adrenaline driven - he needs excitement. I don't find his job as a helicopter particularly worthy - there are others pilots who could do it just as well and patients - such as that murder victim who died - don't care who is flying the craft. However only a royal like William can contribute to the work I described above - his abilities as a prince are unique - as a pilot - they are not.

    15. Charlotte gives us a lovely post and within a day the conversation is back to work and abdication. It's beyond depressing

    16. Rebecca, I think that taking quasi-public money gives people the right to question how it's used. If your taxes were used to fund something that did not perform the function it got the money for, don't you think you'd wonder why you were contributing to it? It's not the fact that they have money. Bill Gates and Warren Buffett have more money than they do, but I don't see people telling them how to spend it -- because it's their money and they worked like hell to earn it.

      They do live in a gilded cage and I personally would hate it. You would think William would have acclimatized to it by now -- he was born in it after all -- and his wife chose that life. William needs to make his peace with it, and taking two year stints at whatever job strikes his fancy just makes him look like a dilettante. What was OK at 22 is not OK for a 32 year old married man with children. He needs to grow up and either (a) accept the responsibility that comes with his role, or (b) request removal from it and find something to do that stirs him.

      I also agree with Julia.

    17. Wow. Julia, definitely food for thought that I have never heard before. I do think as Diana, that from early on William has never wanted to be king. She said Harry would make a much better king.
      If William and Kate are going to get out of it, the sooner the better. They can't stay on the fence forever.

    18. Prince William concluded his introduction to Hurd's biography of the Queen with a promise to live a "life of service." That speaks his belief about his life and his future.

    19. When I read the Queen Mother's authorized biography, I was surprised by how often, in the 20's, she and her husband went night clubbing. They seemed to live very much the life of their well off peers oof the time. But by the end of the book, I felt that Princess Anne's work ethic has been heavily influenced by her grandmother, not to mention that of Prince Charles. He also picked up her sense of entitlement. Lady Elizabeth Bowes Lyon nursed wounded soldiers during WWI, then became a sought after debutante. She always had that sense of service combined with a love of good fun. And she was known to enjoy a stiff drink. I think her great grandsons take after her (have inherited a lot of her traits, Paola). William, it seems to me, also posseses a sensitivity that is all his own, and I think he will bring to his life of service a complex but understanding personality. He will be a very interesting King.

    20. Rebecca whether money is important or not and whether it brings peace or not is really irrelevant. When you take money from a public fund you must give something back in return. That is the first rule of being an ethical human being. What you are saying is absolutely off-point and redundant and not a rational counter-argument to any of the points being made here.

      William makes it abundantly clear that he thinks that royal work is nonsense - as Julia said. And I agree fully with her sentiment on that.
      Maggie, I though that was an extremely well thought out statement you made. Kudos for writing so well. I only want to add that there is something to what Moxie is saying about it may be more culturally accepted to denigrate your country in England than it is elsewhere. For instance not that many years ago Harry literally said that he "did not like England very much" and loved Africa. No paraphrasing or taking out of context. Those were his words. Again, they were probably said while young and silly, but I think that they do belie the rather negative attitude William and he share towards their country and their duties. I cannot for the life of me imagine any other member of any other royal family in the world making such a statement, not once but repeatedly.

      Here is the link for the interview

    21. Julia from Leominster28 August 2015 at 07:37

      My apologies to those who don't like the work subject, but the idea that royal duties are not relevent is extremely troublesome to me and has become a byproduct of William and Kate's reluctance to embrace them with any enthusiasm. To many people, William and Kate are the royal family members they know the most about, and from them comes the idea that traditional royal duties are something to be avoided as a dull collection of tree planting and ribbon cutting - something I believe is completely wrong.

      William is an employee working for a charity and giving the money earned (allegedly) to charity - probably not the same one he is employed with.

      His work will have very little charitable benefit (his salary not being large) outside the helicopter charity and it is questionable how much benefit it will bring to it - as I don't know whether it actively seeks public donations - nor will he encourage others to volunteer or bring cheer to much of anyone by his employment. Patients and families won't care who is flying that helicopter, and I doubt his fellow employees will get any particular benefit from it once the novelty wears off. So the benefits of royal work I noted above aren't applicable to William's job.

      As for the preface to the book - I found it rather ironic coming at a time when Kate was apparently articulating all the things she's not going to do in the near future. And while Harry's speech was charming - I believe both brothers would run a mile before taking on any type of conventional job - the type most of us have. Their wish for conventional employment seems more about action - hunting down poachers or flying helicopters and I doubt either are getting much feel for how normal people live - they certainly aren't living that way themselves. William's yearly salary is less than the cost of his new tennis court.

      My apologies also for the typo in my earlier statement - it should have read "aren't" in the first line. And again my apologies for those who don't like the subject but as a royalist who feels conventional royal duties remain essential to the survival of the monarchy and aren't just an excuse for retaining a monarchy but actually bring huge benefits to the country - this is something I feel strongly about.

    22. Rebecca - Sweden28 August 2015 at 09:01

      Bluhare, I understand you. But YouGov (I think it was) asked people if they prefer William having another job or doing fulltime duties, and appearantly 74% (I think it was that number...) prefered him having another job on the side. So I think this might work out well.

    23. Yes Rebecca, everywhere I go people know who I am - people recognize me from the last time I was there.
      Yes, everywhere I go people can take my picture because cell phones are everywhere.
      Yes, people want to be my friend because of what I can do for them - make them laugh or help them with a problem or connect them to someone who can help them in some way. It's what friends do for each other.

      I have never been harmed by someone taking my picture - a photograph, or quote, never hurt anybody who wasn't a liar. It's lovely to have someone call me by my given name when I am in public - it's never been a problem to acknowledge those who do.

      I think someone is living a pretty sweet life if their biggest problems are pictures taken in public and people know their first name and want to be their friend.

      I think what bothers me about his remark is that he doesn't realize that it is his privileged status in the UK that affords him the ability to travel and spend time exploring another continent. He's so wealthy and he's been to Africa on so many expensive trips - whereas most folks who make it over there - it's a once in a lifetime adventure. It's really hard to work up some empathy for him. Of course, I don't live in the UK climate - so I don't know how dreary it can be. Perhaps everyone in the UK wishes they lived somewhere else. As I intimated, perhaps his countrymen can relate to his desire to be elsewhere. Culturally, I find it odd that the future Head of State would make a public statement like that - it is self-involved - and not quite a slogan to be used for the UK Tourist Board.

    24. Julia, you make a great point about folks getting a visit to acknowledge their hard work - especially those who work for the greater good within the country. These are the folks who pay the taxes that go to the royal machine and if they don't ever experience a royal visit or a royal invitation will wonder why they bother paying it.

    25. Julia from Leo
      I was just about to post the question "What exactly IS royal work?" But you already answered it, thank you.
      However....I just don't buy into it. There are many,many other "non-royal" people, wealthy or not, including celebrities,that can and do bring a tremendous amount of attention and money into charities. If the royals disappeared tomorrow, I have a feeling that others would step up just fine, to keep the charities going.

      (Anon 1:38, I feel your pain, we are supposed to be discussing Kates fashions, but we are suffering a long
      drought, unfortunately..

    26. First of all, thanks for the very entertaining and interesting chat.
      I completely agree with your last observation of William's choices. But I am afraid he will never have the courage to get out of this situation, probably that's why he playing at 32 this in and out game. It is so interesting how differently we approach and form an opinion of him, for some have lots of questions and doubts how he will manage it, while for others all his actions are fine, mature and understandable.

      For Julia
      So nicely written about Kate and her goal. I wished Kate found something in her "new" royal life that she can pursue. I am sure there are many topics, charities which could be so fascinating to take part in.
      But if I take a look at her early years, nothing really suggests that she will ever take up a role other than supporting her husband. Pity really, but maybe one day.

    27. Rebecca - Sweden28 August 2015 at 14:17

      Moxie, getting recognized at the grocery store is not the ssame thing as not being able to go to another country and be anonomous.
      If they take pictures of you they probably are incidental and not because random people are following you with cameras.
      And for being photographed when you're not aware... tell that to stalking victims that it doesn't do any harm.
      Making a friend because they make you laugh is making a friend because of HOW that person am, making a friend because he's a prince is making a friend because of WHO that person are. It's two very different things. Most people don't like being used, and rather have friends liking them for being them. I don't see why William shouldn't be allowed to feel the same.

      And this part.. I don't even understand what you're trying to say? "I have never been harmed by someone taking my picture - a photograph, or quote, never hurt anybody who wasn't a liar."

      Yes, it can be nice when someone say your name in public. (For me it's anxiety inducing, but people are different). But maybe not all the time and EVERYWHERE.

      Well, it IS hard to realize how privilaged you are because you get used to it. But he has mentioned ALOT of times, talking about his priviliged life and saying that they have it really good etc. Both in speaches and in interviews. He's no fool! But being priviliged doesn't equal trouble free! I am not trying to excuse them (not that I think at the moment they need to be excused), jsut trying to show it in a different light. I think this whole "Well, I have to work 2 jobs and they can't even do one" is a load of humbug and am so tired of this. Then noone is allowed to have problems because there's always someone else having it worse than you.

      And on the "taxpayer money issue". We all know that most of their life is financed by Charles income from the Duchy of Cornwall, the most tax-money the "use" are in security. And those same tax payers pay for security for alot of famous people and former/current criminals etc.

    28. Moxie@ 09:42

      “He's so wealthy and he's been to Africa on so many expensive trips - whereas most folks who make it over there - it's a once in a lifetime adventure”

      Once in a life time of Africa trip can mean many things for different people.
      -A onetime trip of Africa can retrace to the time of English migration to America who brought forced labor in the form of slaves for economic gain. The slaves of that history and time made that ONCE IN A LIFE TIME forced trip until generations later their successors returned/Liberia as an example.

      -A onetime trip of Africa can also mean political exile from some countries of Africa, and thus the risk of being in geographical proximity without a secured/guaranteed amnesty/ a threat by the native country in Africa. A non-choice based on principled choice.

      -A onetime trip from/to can also mean the multitudes of immigrants running from dictators and fascists and arriving to different countries.

      -There are those who have tight budgets, commute to Africa at least twice a year after toiling for the money in other countries.

      The British monarchy has had a long history with Africa. The resources of its wealth and the former colony countries also have some form of relation with BRF. In other words, his trip to Africa is a combination of serious business and pleasure. Harry had been there the whole summer out of the media’s spot lite. That is serious business and pleasure.

      -The context some statements are made in the scheme of subject matter can trigger/be provocative/sometimes negatively.

      At times the kind of radical outlook you have on some matters seems your message / “you’re thinking” is questionable, or its source is just to be the antithesis of what you “despise”/or whatever your purpose/may be it is “love”/in flames. There might be some fire in your belly for something, but the balance is murky.

    29. I don't appreciate the use of the "p" word on our beautiful blog. We are obviously all articulate enough to convey ideas without that. This is a Duchess Kate blog, not a kardashian blog. (no cap on purpose.)

    30. Wow Moxie, I for one would not recognize you, would not seek you out and not want a picture of you, but certainly would do all for Kate or William.

      Julia, I am sorry, but after reading your posts for the last several years I in no way believe you are a monarchist.

      How sad Charlotte gave us a great post and it turns negative and back to the same old same old in less that 24 hrs.
      Rebecca, hang in there. There are many of us who do support what Kate and William and think they will be a great King and Queen WHEN the time is appropriate. No matter how many logical reasons one can give for why something has happened, it will be torn down by the anti-monarchist agenda.

    31. I honestly don't believe Julia's comments represent an anti-monarchist agenda at all. I think her comments provide a critical analysis of the monarchy today, specifiacally Williams and Kate's role in the firm. A republican isn't going to be swayed by Kate wearing Alexander McQueen to an engagement, they will want to see her working and showing the public that it is worth it to have a monarchy. Die hard royalists might not care if Kate is never seen but some (including myself) might see her lack of engagements as troubling for the future. And I know Kate is a mother and a wife and those duties are very important. But she also has royal duties to attend to which will increase when she becomes the Princess of Wales. And right now I don't think she is ready to be the Princess of Wales, so IMO she should be using this time to do more engagements and build up her porfolio so the transition will not be as hard. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that this is part of Julia's argument (maybe not on this thread.) I want Kate to take up more work so that she will be successful as the Princess of Wales and eventually Queen, because I really think that she has the potential and the platform to do a lot of good in this world. Does that make me anti-monarchist who hates Kate and the royal family?

    32. Anonymous @15:37
      British Monarchists: “Support Tradition, Promote Heritage, Defend the Crown and Embrace Charity”.
      This is probably one of other foundations/organizations identity/guideline.

      From Julia’s posts, not only is she well informed on the subject, cares a lot about the reality of the subject, but seems to fit well in the above definition.

      In any government system, there are, the absolutely yes people; the thinkers; the doers; and the cautious advisors who object when matters seem out of line. For the most part, I believe the later had been the highlight of her argument. She had lived in it as a member of its community and native-citizen of the country. It is also a matter of one’s country’s well-being first, and the system’s issues second.

      If you detailed your conclusion, it would have been nice to be more informed from your perspective.

    33. Julia, I do believe that you are a deeply concerned monarchist. I also know that you have been deeply affected by the Diana era, which was both fortunate and unfortunate. But this is a different time, and William and Cathwerine are a different couple. The courtiers are younger, the attitude now is toward a new generation, and family building is their focus as long as their children are tiny. William is gaining valuable experience.

      The trouble with the work discussion here is that it is repetitive and never ending, and it does not influence the operation of the monarchy. Your comments are kind compared to some that are posted on this blog. I can understand your concern much more than the negativity that seems to have no purpose. And every post does have threads that inundate us in it.

    34. The position that the Duchy of Cornwall funds are unrelated to taking funds from taxpayers is preposterous. With just a small but interesting example, here is an article from the royalist Telegraph which describes how the Duke of Cornwall makes millions from taxpayers who have passed away - money that would go to the government otherwise.

      Wisely, Prince Charles listened to some good advice and donated these funds to charity. With the way Kate and William are living their lives right now, in defiance of building a positive public image, I can imagine them using those funds to redo the tennis courts of their future. And that's terrible.

    35. Julia from Leominster28 August 2015 at 20:01

      Anonymous 15:37, I'm shocked by your suggestion that I am what? A republican? I don't know whether to take it seriously. (Anyone who knows me would burst out laughing.) I have been a morachist since I was four or five years old and became entranced by my mother's or nana's (not sure which now) book on the coronation. I have not changed my belief that we have the most wonderful queen and while I try to be polite to republican friends who seem to be growing in numbers, I don't agree with them in any way.
      But being a supporter of the monarchy doesn't mean supporting all members just because they are young and attractive - I once thought Margaret as beautiful as a fairy princess and while I certainly don't condemn her on all accounts - she had a very troubled situation - few people today would see her as an ideal royal. I have in my sitting room a handsome royal bowl - commemerating the coronation of Edward VIII - bought by my Nana, who refused to return it when the coronation didn't happen. He was seen as the bright young man of his day - as popular or more so as William. In my youth - all the girls - me included thought Andrew was so handsome and brilliant -a dashing war hero - a photographer - well, things didn't end so well. I went through the Diana mess - although I remain a huge supporter of her for the work she did. Even Alexandra, my favourite royal since my youth has had her share of problems. So I don't look at royals as unfalliable and I am well aware of what happens to royals who don't age well.

      So yes, I'm very cautious right now about the present situation. I see young people losing interest in the royal family. I believe the monarchy will surivive and I will always support it but being blindly confident that William and Kate will succeed no matter what they do does the monarchy no favours.
      So how do I feel personally - I have nothing but great respect for the queen, Philip, and Anne. I believe Charles may be a brilliant king in many ways, but I don't like his marriage and will tolerate Camilla because I have to, but have no respect for her. I have every wish and hope that William and Kate will be as hardworking and great as the present queen but am no longer as confident of that as I was right at the time of their wedding. But I would be pleased to be wrong and hope I am.
      But at the risk of being offensive, calling me an anti-monarchist is about the silliest thing I have yet read on this blog - dangerously silly for those who support the monarchy because to muddle republicans with critical monarchists puts the institution in a very vulnerable state - to ignore problems is more damaging to William and Kate than thoughtful criticism. Just ask any company that folded because they didn't listen.
      In fact, I have my suspicions that they may be a lot of people within the royal household who agree with me and are concerned. As I have said always, I don't understand all the reasons why things are happening - I just believe in addressing problems before William and Kate are fifty-five and as unpopular as Prince Andrew is today despite some fine work he has done.

    36. I am a monarchist as well. I think it's bigger than William and Kate, and I can support a monarchy without being blindly adoring of it and all its members. I'm afraid that if the younger generation (WIlliam and Kate for the most part) doesn't step up it will be a nail in the monarchy's coffin. I don't want to see that, therefore, I kvetch.

    37. Rebecca - Sweden28 August 2015 at 21:06

      I don't think it's fair to accuse posters of being republican just because they're concerned. And especially not Julia. We have different viewpoints, and Julia is very good at expressing this in a kind way without the negative tone some posters spew into it.

    38. Julia from Leominster28 August 2015 at 23:45

      Thank you everyone who agreed I'm not a republican - and an anti-monarchist by definition must be a republican. To make one of my dreaded analogies - film critics don't hate flim - theatre critics don't hate the theatre (at least, I hope not.) You can like an actor or actress and think they have enormous potential but still feel the last vehicles they were in were wretched and they are on the wrong career track - although this is a stronger, this is a little how I feel about William and Kate at the moment.
      Anonymous you got me so upset, I made a terrible mistake - it is infallible, of course, not "unfalliable."
      Ironically, I post here because I have huge respect for Charlotte's blog and feel this is a safe place to express my opinions without them being misused by - those dratted republicans for instance - who no more follow a blog like this than they care about what Kate wears. Perhaps in my dim mind, I hope someone with influence will read this blog and take note - even though I know this is highly unlikely. But I do feel it is a safe community - the reponse to the royal fashion challange showed the interest - and if people say I'm coming too hard, I don't mind - just don't degrade royal duties or call me a republican.
      On the subject of royal duties - Barbara is right - those roles in charitable work are being taken over by celebrities -those roles aren't meaningless - they just aren't being fully represented by royals, particularly young ones. The last book my beloved father gave me was" Wait For Me" by the Duchess of Devonshire (what every good republican reads LOL) and she pointed this out too - that events that the aristocracy used to participate in are being taken over by the local footballer. I am old fashioned and am no celebrity lover -so I'm sorry to see this - I want the royal family at least to keep being stuck in.
      And to me that means all royal family members - I'm concerned when the youngest active members are in their fifties - I believe the royals should be represented full time by both the young and the old.
      I actually do believe experience outside the royal hothouse can be useful - but the reason I'm not jumping with enthusiasm about Willam and Harry's job programme is that they have already had a decade of such experience - it's sounding to be an excuse for not taking on work they see as boring.
      And if they actually did it, I think they might not find it boring - experience is not only necessary to make good workers - it often also creates a love of the work - few love their jobs until they have done it a while. And while I absolutely wish Charles a long life - William could be called to take over at any time. He needs to be ready. So does Kate.
      As for Kate I will repeat again - I don't think she needs at all to work full time but one or two engagements a week plus preparation should not be a burden. My feeling is that this would excellent for the children, even at a young age. It means your mum has a life away from you. My own mum could not have been more devoted but after she left work, she volunteered two days a week. She wasn't always available for instance to go to the shops with me and sometimes I minded at the time - but in the end I found myself so proud of her. Just as I would love George and Charlotte to be able to point to Kate and say - "look, that's my mum, see how she used her position to do good in the world - and Harry's love of Africa and dedication to it comes directly from feeling that way about Diana.
      Finally, I'm sick of these stupid headlines - marital trouble - James' failing business - tennis courts - I long for real royal news and wish William and Kate would announce a true royal schedule. I'm weary of these announcements - often sounding pompous - of what Kate won't and doesn't mean to do - I would love to hear something positive - that she is looking forward to royal work and has plans for it.

    39. I assume when your mother was volunteering two days a week you weren't a toddler or infant, as you mentioned "going to the shops."
      You do realise that few, if any of these announcements you are weary of were initiated by William, Catherine, or even KP. I am weary of the headlines, too. If people crave royal tidbits to the point of reading unverified stories, there is seriously something
      wrong. There is so much going on in the world to write about. I understand Thailand has recently
      destroyed a huge stockpile of seized illegal ivory tusks. William has done his part in that mission and
      will continue. I doubt we have any idea exactly how much time in phone calls, letters, meetings and such
      are involved in W&C's charity work-.including his volunteering with the organisation that provides
      for air ambulance service in East Anglia.99
      By the way, I am "99," not anon. That handle is no more anonymous than "Redhead," for example. My comment s are no more anonymous than anyone else's who comments without using his real name.

    40. Maggie - Minneapolis29 August 2015 at 02:49

      I'd like to second mm from above about the Duchy of Cornwall money - I never get it when people say that it isn't taxpayer money. It may not literally be coming from taxes, but what right does Charles have to it except that he is the Duke of Cornwall (a title he would lose if the monarchy ended)? He doesn't work for the money. He just receives it because he is the Prince of Wales. Every time the royal family says they are using "private money" to pay for something - it just means they aren't using the Sovereign Grant money. But in terms of how/why they get the money, there is absolutely no difference b/w the Sovereign Grant money and the Duchy money, aside from the royals arbitrarily calling one public and the other private. If the monarchy ended, they would no longer receive that money from the Duchy. So it seems pretty clear-cut to me that it's also public revenue that the royal family is receiving.

      And Rebecca - I totally agree that money doesn't solve everything. I guess our difference of opinion lies in the weight of the "strings" attached to the royals. For me, yes, the public has expectations for them. But those expectations are so easily fulfilled! Kate goes to a 45 minute engagement and the newspaper headlines are "Princess Kate spends an afternoon with underprivileged children." Kate goes on holiday and (until recently) the headlines are like "Kate goes on a well-deserved holiday after a busy January!" (with like 3-5 work days total). I'm not disparaging what Kate does when she does work. But I think that it is very easy for her (and William) to fulfill the public's obligations with some very easy stuff. Yes, maybe other rich people have it even easier. But not in all ways. For example, the Gates have tons of money but always hold the risk of losing a bunch in a bad investment or whatever. Or look at half of the noble families in Britain who are struggling to finance their huge estates and luxurious lifestyles and are being forced to sell family homes or live more frugally. The royals do not have to be worried about that. They have a guaranteed future salary for an infinite amount of years as long as they don't mess it up so bad that they lose it. The Windsors survived a decade that involved 3 of the Queen's children divorcing, with adultery scandals, pushing out Diana scandals, using royal connections for money scandals, etc. And even that didn't lose them their public funding! So I guess I just don't think that the "strings" attached to their money are all that burdensome, and/or the problem I have is that William DOES find them burdensome, rather than a privilege to be born into a birthright that gives him the ability to cause change on gigantic levels and make so many people's lives better if he so wishes. And yes, that privilege comes with having to release pictures of your children and attend some ribbon-cutting ceremonies (although I agree with Julia that it's a problem to see those ceremonies as boring given how much attention they bring to good causes). But why not see it as an honor that people care so much about you and your family?
      I always hesitate to make comparisons about how much someone's life sucks because there's obviously always someone else worse off and that shouldn't negate how much the life of the first person is difficult. But I don't feel any qualms about saying that while I recognize that no life is perfect and money doesn't solve everything, I pretty firmly think that William is a very lucky man for being born into the Windsor family. Because not wanting to say that someone is even more worse off goes both ways - that means we also shouldn't judge William's life by the fact that someone else is even better off.

    41. Maggie - Minneapolis29 August 2015 at 02:52

      Julia - I absolutely agree that it would be good for the children if Kate did 1-2 engagements per week. Setting a good example for your children is critical. It's interest though that William seems to use his mother as more of an example of what NOT to do lol.

    42. Respectly, Maggie, what can a newborn baby and a toddler learn except mommy leaves me sometimes?99

    43. Julia from Leominster29 August 2015 at 06:15

      99 - my apologies for missing your name - I'm still not seeing it above so I must be bleary-eyed, my mother volunteered one day from before I was born - even as she was still working part time - I should have made that clear. She's gone now - I miss her every day - so I can't ask how soon she went back after my birth but I'm guessing quite quickly for she was later honoured for her length of work. The second day she took on I believe started when I was quite small - I don't remember her not doing it - I was left with my nana - and if she had other activities - the cleaner would babysit me. When I was small, I didn't mind at all - it was just how it was, and later several of my friend's mums had to work and would come home exhausted - so I was glad my mum was there much of the time - although we did love to hang out at those friends' houses! I think I minded the most at around twelve when my mum thought me too young to go to the shops on my own - and wasn't there to go with me when I wanted.

      It must be different now - even my friends' mums who didn't volunteer or work had there own interest and often left their children to go to clubs or activities. I suppose it all is more child-centric today. All my friends who had children and all my co-workers worked - generally when their babies were about six months or even earlier - and that's still true today - so I don't really know. Most never took a year - one mum with her own business was back within a month - she has a nanny - I thought that rather extreme but she and her son seem very close so perhaps it doesn't matter so much.
      Most mums I know like to have the grandmothers help if they can and some have nannies - some use daycare but don't like to - but I'm reading a little book on Denmark and daycare - subsidised - is the norm there - so it's different everywhere. I still think it would be good for George and Charlotte once she's a bit older - but I could be wrong.
      As for the news in general - it is beyond depressing for the most part - I follow it of course -one must - but would like some traditional royal news instead of those silly headlines and for William and Kate to make their own announcements in a positive way - not just leave it to others to make these announcements which we can't tell have any truth or not. I don't read the silly stories or want to, but I know there will be those who do - and believe what they read.
      I trust William does royal work behind the scenes - there is no way to tell.

    44. Oh much speculation about others lives. I though I was on a fashion blog.

    45. I don't think it's fair to call people negative when they are simply not attaching emotion to the subject. I don't subscribe to the "poor royals" in need of pity and compassion. These are some seriously rich folks who do as they please. Maggie touches on an interesting aspect of the Duchy of Cornwall - Charles gets to control the money as he sees fit - Not the community and citizens who acquired it. Charles decides what charities and influence it is going to have - not the majority or the representative of their choosing. Which brings us back to William and Harry - who, for some reason, seem to think spending time and resources in Africa is the best use of their Princely position. And when William inherits the Duchy funds is he going to redirect them to Africa and wildlife causes and not back into the UK Economy? I'm not sure how well that all plays to folks in the UK who fund their lifestyle and security. I know some folks think highly of Harry because he spends his time and attention there - however, is that what the people of the UK need? Princes who spend their time on the welfare of people in other countries and not their own countrymen? To pay for royal protection for a Prince who is spending months in another land? I'm not saying Harry shouldn't do it - I'm just questioning whether the UK citizens ought to be expected to foot the security bill. I'm also questioning what controls are there are on the income from the Duchy so that it doesn't get spent out of the country?

      It is really hard for someone with my cultural background to understand all the unquestioning power and resources given to one family.

    46. Anon 15:37
      So you are one of the ones KP wrote a press release about - folks who go out of their way to seek out the royals and take their picture. I'm not sure Rebecca would approve.

    47. There are seven unsigned anonymous comments up there Anonymous99. You didn't sign the one where you were saying you're 99. So they do go into one amorphous blur. Assuming you think your opinions are worth reading, a name helps. A lot of anonymous comments are boring and repetitive and I, for one, tend to skim over them. Yours might get more attention if you put a name on them.

      As for your question to Maggie, ask any daycare center.

    48. Moxie @ 10:27

      I am so glad you wrote what you did. We have been trained in "fairy tale" thinking since we were born. Does Disney ring a bell? And while tales spun by fairies might be laudable for some, there are others of us who take more of a realistic, accountability approach, for the sake of fiscal responsibility and moral fiber, and we follow the money. And when it comes to the financial bottom line, it can be very revealing,
      it is what it is.

      Granted, the "royals" generate millions for charity
      and there are sources outside that family that have documented that. That is excellent. But just taking that into account and not the other side of it, as Moxie shares, is not prudent.

      So, I am thankful to get more of the whole picture. BTW, Moxie, since you brought it up, what is your cultural background?

      California Girl

  27. Great post! Two points that make me feel a little sorry for Will and Kate because of the normalcy they can't have-
    Would they have to have normal security team with them on a trip to Africa or Mustique? It must be hard to forget about everyday life when you have a few PPOs following you around.
    I've always wondered about Kate's comment that she waited until she was home from Scotland to tell her mother in person about the engagement. I'd imagine she would've loved to tell her family right away over the phone, but must be wary of security after the phone hacking scandal.

    1. I have always wondered what they were doing in Scotland after just experiencing such a romantic engagement time in Africa.

      Anyone know?

    2. Maggie - Minneapolis27 August 2015 at 21:01

      I imagine they had to tell the royal family about the engagement and discuss stuff like when/how to announce, etc. I also wouldn't be surprised if they fudged a little in the interview about the exact details of telling people haha. Kate is so close to her family - I'd be shocked if she waited until after the Africa trip and the Scotland trip to tell them, even with phone hacking concerns.
      Also my guess is they have extra security when they go to Africa or Mustique (but especially Africa - Mustique is at least a secluded island that is probably somewhat more of a controlled environment than most places).

    3. William and Kate told Charles and the Queen the day they announced their engagement. William asked Michael Middleton for permission after he proposed to Kate. Whatever they did in Scotland, it wasn't telling his family.

    4. Thanks Bluhare,

      Now my curiosity is really piqued.

    5. Seriously? He told the Queen and Charles the day of the interview broadcast ? So Michael and Carole knew much before William's family. I have to say I am floored. Father and son must have a very different relationship than normal fathers and sons. I would expect that they would tell Charles and William's family at the same time or the same day that Kate told hers !

    6. They were probably doing what they always do in Scotland - taking a leisurely break.

    7. "I don't always go to Scotland, but when I do I take a leisurely break."

      -MMoxie, the most interesting woman in the world

    8. Often parents are not told at the same time and who knows the actual timing. The ring is gorgeous but I can see not wearing it much of the time and only the bands as it is so big.

    9. WAIT a minute,

      Since William would have had to get the engagement ring from someone within the Royal keeper of the Jewels role, I think the Royal Family had to have known AND already given William the official okay. She would be Queen consort, and Queen or King mother and a direct descendant to the heirs of the throne even beyond that. MOST LIKELY he already had that permission and PERHAPS just told them then that he had popped the question at that particular time out of the three weeks he had been carrying the ring around.

    10. Does anyone know specifically when they were in Africa? If so, we can find out on the Royal circular or whatever it is called whether or not William (and Kate) were in Scotland after that in any "official" capacity. I do so hope that he was.

    11. I have been trying to find out whether William and Kate were "officially" or unofficially in Scotland after their engagement time in Africa. I have not found anything about that yet.

    12. The engagement ring was Diana's personal property which had been bequeathed (among other things) to her children. He would not have had to ask permission to take it. It was his or Harry's. The story is he asked Harry for it who agreed to take her watch in lieu of the ring. Don't know if that is true; can't find anything to back it up.

    13. Rebecca - Sweden28 August 2015 at 21:01

      That story was proved false actually :) When Dianas will was revealed recently it was shown that William had gotten it :)

    14. Engaged October 20, 2010
      Engagement announced November 16, 2010
      In Scotland sometime between those times perhaps.

    15. Maggie - Minneapolis29 August 2015 at 02:34

      Bluhare - I just don't get how it's possible that William and Kate could have not told Charles and the Queen until the day of the announcement. For one thing, wasn't William and Charles' press office the same? How could William have planned the announcement without Charles knowing? And for another, wasn't William a little young/inexperienced about how to handle the announcement? I feel like he would have wanted the advice of more senior royals. And like, the day of the announcement would be important - it couldn't clash with something else important (like Charles rolling out a new initiative or the Queen doing something big or something). Wouldn't William have had to coordinate with them about the date? It also just seems incredibly insulting and odd (I mean for goodness sakes, the Queen was the first person to know after both births of the Cambridge children). Kate, by accepting the proposal, became a future Queen consort. I cannot imagine the current Queen not knowing about this more than hours before the announcement to the general public.
      Obviously none of this is meant as a slight to you, bluhare! I'm just curious as to how the Mirror would know this.

    16. bluhare - you made me laugh out loud. What else do royals do in Scotland?

    17. Maggie, your guess is as good as mine. I'd seen that little gem bandied about quite a bit and, having got caught in believing something that had been said a lot and finding out it never happened, I now go and look before I say something and found that article right off the top. Didn't have to really go on a search for it which is good because I've been reconstructing my computer after I blew it up! Lost all my email, contacts and documents. I had the documents backed up but not my email. Oops.. I should know to back things up by now!! So learn from bluhare . . . be careful when upgrading to Windows 10. It's supposed to stop the installation if it finds conflicts in your computer. I can tell you that a video card conflict will not stop it and will make it pretty much impossible to use your computer!

      The internet's been sanitized for our protection too. I remember reading quite a few articles around the time of the engagement and wedding with specific items in them that are no longer to be found. So some things I can't confirm because the source has been deleted, but this was one thing I could.

      But to your point; I don't think their offices were combined back then. Might be wrong; don't know, but I think they were separate. If it was after they got married Charles tried to centralize everything. And according to them they kept the engagement secret. Whether they told family (although I now can't find the article where Michael Middleton talks about keeping a secret from his family after William asked his permission and how hard it was), I can't tell you. Perhaps they told them and didn't mention when they'd announce it. I got the feeling they kept it secret from everyone.

    18. PS Why would I ever think that is a slight, Maggie? You're free to ask questions and disagree with me all you want. I can take it! :)

    19. Did William need to ask the Queen's permission to marry?

    20. Bluhare,

      Perhaps he didn't tell them he had asked and she accepted but I feel CERTAIN he had to ask the Queen's permission to even make a proposal at some point absolutely.

      Obviously William's wife would produce heirs to the throne directly and indirectly indefinitely into the future. The Queen HAD to grant him permission. His timing could be his own though

      AND, Harry said in an interview, I think it was the one when he was in the artic, that Kate being "allowed" into the family was "huge".
      They were asking his opinion on the engagement and upcoming marriage.

      I have also found many articles that I had stored in my e-mail now have "content is empty".

    21. There is an article that hasn't been "sanitized out" containing an interview with Harry's ex Natalie Pinkman, who was still close with the Wales' inner circle at the time. Her engagement story is identical to WK's, except a little earlier in the month of October 2010. Same location. Same proposal story. Everything.

      I have always felt Kate deserved better than some copycat proposal.

  28. Charlotte
    it's Perfect, Just Perfect! How Important for us all to take a step back in time & Remember!:)
    Thanks for All You Do!
    Becca USA

  29. thank you for the royal throwback I can see the duchess really involve in the process of being a princess and charlotte great storyteller and you put an effort to read all the comments and what a stunning pics of south Africa and I love that she wear issa but I had question on why she could wear issa collection I find hard to believe the al fayed history bought the issa in Harrods I think the duchess engagement ring she wore it with chain on her necklace I was imagining it too but I think she wore it on the palace on her Berkshire home then her till her grandfather funeral I think they decided on media tell the media and rest is history

    1. From what I understand, Kate was a fan of the Issa brand before it was purchased by the al Fayed family (which, at the time of her engagement, hadn't happened yet). After the purchase, Kate stopped wearing the Issa brand.

    2. William is working for a charity. So technically, he is doing daily "royal work." Lending his position and
      publicity to the charity. Of course, he was criticised for just this attention. Let's make up our minds: is
      drawing attention to a charity a good thing?

      Why is the Queen so revered for doing her duty and becoming the monarch, while William's commitment
      is met with scorn to the point of actually suggesting he step out of the succession? People in the Queen's
      generation diid not talk about their feelings If they had, I imagine a few people would have had an earful from HM.. William and Harry do talk about their feelings..As do most of their generation, I suspect.

      Did you never complain about washing windows or other household chores? Or about the children's messes or husband's snoring? Does that mean you want to give up being a wife and mother because the everyday activities and responsibilities get a bit wearing? Well, I doubt you will hear William say the words.- I give up, either.
      I'm not sure William has actually said he did not want to be king, but I assume he did, since some are suggesting he "drop out." 99

      By the way-the Queen only promised to serve her country all her life. Did she actually say she would do
      so as Queen? There are many ways to serve. Alexandra is a prime example of dedicated service, without
      the need to be a monarch. Beatrix of the Netherlands still serves her country,despite abdicating to
      allow the next generation its due and its time.

    3. Actually, he isn't, Anonymous. He's an employee of the charity. He does not actively provide publicity for it, and he isn't working in his royal capacity. He's working in his personal capacity. Two different things. After the initial flurry of interest (and highly likely due to the app that can track his helicopter as well) publicity has dropped to almost nothing. That's not what royals do. They up the publicity.

      The queen has said she will be queen until she dies, and she's never wavered mfrom that.

      Talking about your feelings regarding work or your job is one thing. Broadcasting them to the world is another.

    4. Maggie - Minneapolis29 August 2015 at 02:29

      "Why is the Queen so revered for doing her duty and becoming the monarch, while William's commitment
      is met with scorn to the point of actually suggesting he step out of the succession?"

      Because when the Queen talks or has talked about being the monarch, she has spoken of it as a privilege. When William does it, it sounds like he has to clean all the bathrooms in Buckingham Palace.

    5. anon 14:27-Respectfully, I disagree. If you refer to her famous birthday speech, she does not speak of being
      queen her whole life. From
      the official website of the British Monarchy, quoting a speech QEII gave in South Africa on her
      21st birthday, , 21 April, 1947: "I declare before you all that my whole life, whether it be long or short, shall
      be devoted to your service and the service of our great imperial family." 99

    6. Julia from Leominster29 August 2015 at 06:17

      Maggie - that's quite good, really! You put into words just what I was thinking.

    7. bluhare - I believe William actually takes money for his role in the form of a salary from the charity. He either uses it for personal cost or re-donates it to another charity. He isn't lending his time.

    8. Rebecca - Sweden29 August 2015 at 15:12

      Moxie, that is because it's not allowed to have someone do payed work without pay. The charity would be doing illegal acts if they didn't pay him and it's also for insurance reasons and so that he pays tax on it. I'm pretty sure William would be pleased to do it for free!

    9. I read that he gives his salary to charity.

    10. Since William's Royal job is lifelong and he is a Royal 24/7 wherever he goes, I think is important that he share his feelings about it.

    11. He's said he's donating it to charity; he's never said which one though that I'm aware of, Moxie. I guess I assumed he'd donate it back, but that's never been said.

      I'll have to look into the illegality of volunteer work in this case, Rebecca. You may be right, although if that's the case there's a lot of volunteer fire and rescue departments in the US that are on very dicy ground!

  30. My first time to post, but I enjoyed this so much, I just wanted to add my thanks to Charlotte for doing such a great job on this blog entry and in general!

  31. Shantel (@FashionandFaith27 August 2015 at 15:45

    Thanks for this fun trip down memory lane/throwback post. Charlotte, you do know how to tell a story! I found myself smiling as I read it--just so sweet!
    It also reminded me of what I was doing at the time the news broke: I was excitedly pregnant with my first (and only) child and had just found out that we were having a boy! Such fun memories...!
    Thanks again!
    Minnesota, USA

  32. That was refreshing and fun! Thank you, Charlotte, for a lovely write-up.

  33. The Queen, if I remember correctly, says that she loves her husband because he always looks at her like at a normal person, not making her feel always "The Queen". In spite of the humor she puts in this kind of statement, in those few words you can see a great deal of daily discomfort. The difference between the Queen and the second in line is ... Princess Diana: she taught her sons to express their discomfort. Was Diana's lesson wrong?
    I see William as the anti-Edward VIII: he is not selfish enough to go back in front of his duties. He will be rather like his great grandfather, who was an extraordinary king without aspiring to be king. It's the best for this role, somebody who does it just for a sense of duty.

    1. Rebecca - Sweden27 August 2015 at 23:30

      I agree fully! Very nicely explained! It's hard enough for us "regulars" keeping up a mask in certain areas of our lives. Imagine having that put up all the time except for in your own house! I wouldn't trade my daily struggles for theirs, no matter how many kitchens or tennis courts I'd get. No way!

    2. Very interesting observation, Paola, about Diana's influencing a "shift" between Charles and his son's attitude toward the throne. Charles represents the old guard and William the "new" modern generation. And it was Diana who brought this shift about. Can you imagine the difference if Camilla had been the mother of Charles children.

    3. Apparently, the Middletons are on St. Bart's.
      Apparently, William and Kate are not. (yet)

    4. Julia from Leominster28 August 2015 at 07:40

      There have been photographs of Carole and her two younger children on St. Bart's.

    5. Julia from Leominster28 August 2015 at 23:54

      Add Donna Air to that - there were photos of James kissing her. They must know photos are being taken - there have been so many out there. (I have to admit Donna brings out the snob in me - very naughty. I don't mind her being self - made but as a royal sister-in-law - I can't say I like the idea.)

      I wonder if Pippa is seeking publicity for this health project of hers - she does have a fabulous figure.

    6. Maggie - Minneapolis29 August 2015 at 02:27

      It's about time for the Cambridge's annual early September visit to Balmoral, so I'd be shocked if they joined the Middletons on St. Bart's, especially since they haven't been to Balmoral at all this summer. And while they sometimes make rather iffy PR decisions, I think they know how angry the public would be if they took a vacation to the Caribbean right now.

    7. Maggie - Minneapolis29 August 2015 at 03:54

      Also my god seriously do the Middletons not ever get tired of just going to tropical elite areas for vacations? They have the financial ability to travel the world and see so many great things, but it's almost always a beach area for rich people. I love the beach and enjoy trips to a nice one, but I also like to see other things (like at least visit the actual country I'm in rather than just staying in a resort). Or you know, see the Seven Wonders and stuff like that :P Kate at least can say that she will see most of the world's sights through decades of future tours, but her family does not get the same luxury.

    8. Maggie - I'm not sure you can assume they haven't been to Balmoral this summer - or rather - Scotland as I do believe they have a house on the grounds. We don't have any information on where Kate is spending her time - we just know it's not in public.

    9. Julia from Leominster29 August 2015 at 16:26

      As for the Middletons - isn't there a storm in the Caribbean - Erika, I'm thinking - sorry, our Erika if you are reading... I suppose they are home now.

    10. Correct, Moxie,

      I think, now that you mention that, that they might have been at Balmoral after the engagement in Kenya. I wonder if the Queen was in residence there at that time. If not, I guess that time in Scotland was a part of their Kenya vacation.

    11. Maggie,

      Even if they think the public would be angry about a tropical vacation at this time, that hasn't stopped them before.

    12. Of course Phillip is going to look at her as a normal person.

      1. He himself is "royalty.
      2. they are third cousins.
      3. he has helped fulfill her role from the moment
      she became Queen. He was the one who told
      her that her father had passed.

    13. Moxie,

      William has a three bedroom lodge on Balmoral that he had renovated for Kate when they were at university. He had a jacuzzi installed, etc. (Kate has always been quite pampered.) (and, yes, I am a little jealous but I will get over it.) That former gamekeeper lodge is called Tam Na Ghar. It apparently is closer to Birkhall on the Balmoral estate than it is to the castle. William was given that as a gift.

      There is another cabin, more civilized than rough rustic, that is by the river Dee, that is also used by William and Kate.

      I am sure there are other cabins/lodging on the estate also. It is nice to be king. :)

    14. Moxie,

      I agree. And, I would guess that Balmoral is where William and Kate went after he proposed in Kenya. According to the Info I have found so far, the Queen was not at Balmoral at that time so they apparently were not there in Scotland,specifically, to give her the engagement news. I am still wondering why a visit to Scotand after 10 days in Kenya.

  34. The Middletons are on St. Bart's, apparently.
    William and Kate are not. (yet?)

    (Sorry if this posted twice.)

  35. That makes a good publicity to the world that Kate is fine. I never saw her family in public beaches, and two different days in a raw showing a happy image; Pippa and James mostly sometimes accompanied by Carole, a friend or Donna.

    1. Here is my vote and suggestion except unless she in going through HG and they want to announce it at the end of the first trimester/3 months/which could also mean another May-emerald baby.
      -Carry at least two engagements, preferably one in Norfolk and the other in Wales.
      -Show up for at least 1 fundraiser for a good cause.
      -Give an interview in the presence of their children/can be edited and merged in a video.
      -Attend the State Dinner banquet for the Chinese leader in October.
      Kate will select all ensembles, shoes, jewelry and accessories from the displays done by duchesskate presenters of the 3 segments.
      That will make it a five years come back of their heightened heralded engagement.
      This blog’s presenters responsibility will be sign a petition with a pleasant note, with the list of recommended style wish them well and mail it to KP.

  36. Here is my vote and suggestion except unless she in going through HG and they want to announce it at the end of the first trimester/3 months/which could also mean another May-emerald baby.

    -Carry at least two engagements, preferably one in Norfolk and the other in Wales.
    -Show up for at least 1 fundraiser for a good cause.
    -Give an interview in the presence of their children/can be edited and merged in a video.
    -Attend the State Dinner banquet for the Chinese leader in October.

    Kate will select all ensembles, shoes, jewelry and accessories from the displays done by duchesskate presenters of the 3 segments.

    That will make it a five years come back of their heightened heralded engagement.
    This blog’s presenters responsibility will be sign a petition with a pleasant note, with the list of recommended style wish them well and mail it to KP.

    1. Oh these double posts although it went through only once. Sometimes it just does not load and shows one confirmation. Any way sorry to the readers who have to see identical double posts that Admin does not seem to have control in deleting them.
      In any case, I made up for my absence of missing a few blogs while on vacation, and went intensely posting on the last and this blogs. My vacation is coming to an end, and most likely will miss posting here.

      Best wishes to all until next time. and beyond.

    2. Julia from Leominster29 August 2015 at 16:17

      My apologies for that anon15 - when I first checked the first part of my post seemed lost - so I put it down to my wonky computer and sent it again -quite mortifying. I don't know why they didn't come through at the same time as that's how I posted them.

      But don't blame Charlotte - please!!! She gives so much of her time to doing these lovely posts (Which those who want can read without the comments) as well as doing mammouth jobs like the fashion posting we just had where she had to set up all those submissions.

      Did you miss the fashions postings - I believe there is another coming up for you to participate in if you have the time - but I know what you mean - I could never have kept up with this when I was working full-time. Good luck and look forward to seeing you again.

  37. Julia from Leominster28 August 2015 at 23:50

    One thing that interests me is when people say William is the face of a new generation of royals - and will do things in a new way. I don't disagree but I'm wondering what people think that means. Social media (yuck,says Julia but she knows she is fighting a losing battle.) But what else? The royal foundation doesn't seem very new - almost every rich bloke or firm has one - some do a lot of good - many seem just there to look charitable. So no, I'm not impressed with the idea of William and Kate going to an occasional royal foundation meeting and attending fund raisers with celebrities and rich donors. I want to see them more involved with people - but how, if not the old-fashioned way. I wonder what people think....

    1. That's an interesting point Julia. What does/how should the monarchy look and feel to the younger generation (William and Kate's)? Perhaps the only real way of finding out would be to do a survey, but there's no doubt as we know things do change considerably between generations and the changes have been rapid in the last few decades in particular - access to media and information through technology in recent times are just one of these.

      Charles was not a young man when William was born, so there's a significant generation gap there for starters and yes, he's a traditionalist in some ways but can also be an 'out there' thinker in others. For the monarchy to remain relevant and its members popular and respected, they will no doubt need to remain relevant to younger British citizens as well as the middle aged, which I think is one of your concerns.

      I agree with you that the 'old-fashioned' being involved with people will always be important in terms of their royal roles, despite the rapid changes in communication channels (social media etc) and being present in person will be critical. Good PR is essential, and perhaps William in particular is not receiving the best guidance - or is ignoring it! It would be reassuring as has been said here, if both William and Kate dedicated themselves to specific charities, issues and causes that are meaningful to them and at the same time enhance the lives of the British public in a visible and tangible way. They CAN do so much to highlight and benefit others in a time, both in Britain and other parts of the world, where things for the man in the street are pretty tough - both economically and socially.

      But that in itself creates it own tensions - how the BRF moves with the rapidly changing world around us and yet maintains its traditions that are so embedded in the past. It's not an easy one, but personally I think William is committed (for lack of a better word) to his role, he may not like it or sometimes wish it were otherwise, but I like to think and hope he will go on to make a good king when his time comes.

      I see Diana is the catalyst in this, who by example, work ethic and her own beliefs (exposing them as children to sick people in hospitals, people in the street, taking them to theme parks unlike any royal children beforehand), set the ground for both her sons to be 'real' in an ever-changing landscape. I have no doubt that William and Harry being in touch with their emotions came from her, not their father! William will need to reign this emotional side in in public and maybe not share as openly with the media as he has done in the past. There's no doubt there are some tricky navigational waters to go through for him in particular, but with the Windsor's longevity I'd guess he has at least a decade (if not two) before he becomes Prince of Wales when he and Kate will really need to step up. They would be wise though, to start this journey sooner than later.

      Fiona in Australia

    2. Julia, William is daily engaged with people, with people in danger... how can I explain that this work is not a common work, it is a work who let William be really, concretely close to people, taking really care of them?

    3. Oh, you mean Paola, that William is NOT just out on a lark, selfishly gathering flight hours for his own aggrandizement and satisfaction????????
      EXACTLY. He is still performing royal duties and gaining all kinds of invaluable experience that can only enhance his future and those affected by it.

      Kate building the next tier of leadership in their most formative years can only be a good thing. The hand that rocks the cradle does rule the world. I believe she will expose the children to the public in an increased and planned way so they will not loathe the media, which would be super counter-productive and unhealthful for them, given their positions and the media presence inherent in those. They will, hopefully, be trained to handle the media in the best ways possible.

      I think and hope that Kate will get into "the swing"of things again soon and even better than before.

      As Kate from Texas also said, in the FOUR years since her marriage, Kate has,

      1. Been adjusting to worldwide media coverage
      on a daily basis, (even more than in her
      single days. She is now the most
      photographed woman in the world. Can
      you even truly imagine that?)
      2. Been adjusting to Royal life within the Royal
      3. Been adjusting to marriage
      4. Been adjusting to having George and taking
      care of a very alert and aggressive toddler
      5. Been adjusting to a new baby girl in the family
      6. Done a couple of world tours
      7. Done numerous public appearances
      8. moved four times
      9. set up 3 households
      10. trained and manages household employees
      11. created and maintained a wardrobe for
      public appearances
      12. maintained family relationships with her
      13. has most likely received substantial amounts
      of briefings and trainings concerning all
      things Royal and pertaining also to her
      14. Has had plenty of time for herself and for
      repose and reflection (not likely) even
      with vacations.
      15. Granted, the girl has help, but even at that
      the responsibility is hers.

      Let's walk a mile in her shoes and THEN comment.


      William and Kate need a new and savvy advising team (OR come back Jamie Pinkerton, come back) AND a NEW PR team that knows what the **** it is doing.

      THAT would make all the difference in the world AND would eliminate much of the debating that we, and others, have been going over and over and over. Those debates are just a symptom of the MUCH needed overhaul suggested above.

      It all starts at the top. The top for William and Kate, practically speaking, are those two teams. The monarchy, in many ways, hinges on those.
      They HAVE the ability to make those changes.

      William and Kate. Re-assess and regroup FAST.

  38. Sarah from Calif.29 August 2015 at 03:31

    Very enjoyable post Charlotte, thank you and have a lovely weekend!

  39. Kate, Texas, USA29 August 2015 at 04:57

    How lovely! It was wonderful to take a walk down Will & Kate memory lane! I love their engagement story from the interview and one could really sense Kate's excitement. Everyone loves a good Royal love and sigh. Hard to believe it's been almost 5 years now since the engagement. Five years, new homes, and 2 children later, and the story continues! Thanks for the happy post Charlotte!

  40. oh I love pippa middleton sexy craves are fantastic I know pippa middleton works on charity I think the heat foundation maybe William and kate are in balmoral I love those picture of the middletons but I wonder if donna air daughter is include to the trip

  41. I had a more detailed post but I messed it up somehow.. I haven't posted in ages but this debate is getting so tiresome. They are not the crown prince and princess. Comparing Cstherine to the Queens of Europe and the crown princesses is not fair. Ie Leti, Mathilde and Maxima are queens, Mette Marie, Victoria, Mary are Crown princesses. Just because Willism and Catherine are better looking than the CP and his consort doesn't change their current status. Williams job may not make sense financially but he is learning how a critical organization functions. Compromise and negotiation, personal organization, suppressing your immediate emotions for the good of the team, quick decision making with often minimal information. These are life or death decisions. Cohesive team work is essential.... Again success or failure is life or death... For you, your team and the victim. Anyone who thinks this is pointless exposure outside the firm is not seeing the bigger picture and are likely the same people looking forward to William and Catherine's coronation in excitement to see what designer she'll choose or what jewels she wears. They are likely the same people who haven't factored in that this will only happen upon the death yes death of their loved ones....they will be dealing with their own grief and that of their children and they will be expected to also carry the grief of the commonwealth and show leadership throughout. Just because they aren't partaking in weekly 'pony shows' like the media wants does not mean they aren't 'living up to their potential' it means they aren't 'living up to unfair and unrealistic expectations' .They are currently laying the foundation for a strong family unit with hopefully well adjusted children who can handle that pressure of the grief of a nation when it comes during their own emotional grieving time. Just my 2 cents. Erininnyc

    1. Well said Erininnyc. Tiresome AND repetitive. Blossominoz

    2. Julia from Leominster29 August 2015 at 16:11

      A very good write-up Erininnyc - even if I can't completely agree with you - I would think William has had sufficient time when he was in the services to have such experience (I'm not saying it isn't of value) and I don't think telling young people that they must look to Charles and Camilla (the latter of whom is so unpopular with all ages, many like to pretend she doesn't exist) will help solidify support for the royal family - status alone doesn't do it. We know youth and attractiveness has appeal in building support for the royal family - always had, always will, there is no point in being unrealistic about it. (A bit like telling young people, don't follow Taylor Swift - you must follow Cliff Richards because he's still out there performing...) But you present your 2 cents very well.

  42. Rebecca - Sweden29 August 2015 at 13:36

    I've been watching through this documentary and thought it might shed some light on royal engagements (many of the royals talking about how it's not the most exciting thing in the world... since William was accused of being the only one). And also when you watch how William conducts his meet and greets compared to the older I think we see a more informal, sit down and talk approach which he still keeps. They also talk about how terribly terrifying it is when you start off and also one of the royal advisors talk about advising on careers etc. It's 10 years old but seem very relevant still.

  43. Brava, Erin in NYC

    It is so EASY to Judge and criticize and condemn, isn't it? It is not always as easy to support, encourage, undergird and be patient and forebearing. Just "Human Nature 101".

    Would that the latter would prevail in the media circus that surrounds them. The fact that they all haven't abdicated is amazing to me.

    1. Julia from Leominster29 August 2015 at 18:27

      Oh goodness, I would rather be a royal's wife any day than a politican's - free opulant London flat - free country house handed to you, lovely other country houses and their gardens available to enjoy - people smiling with flowers whenever they go, staff to take care of everything, no worry about finding a place in the carpark or getting up at six to go to a job you detest but need to pay the bills and then coming home with the laundry waiting and the loo needing scrubbing.

      And now we're supposed to just patiently let them do as they wish, holiday as much as they like, give far less than they take, without a word of criticism or we're bad people. Even as we may be being told our work is rubbish or that we have to stay late to rewrite a project we've already spent hours on or we risk getting the sack or we're just trying to find a job and have received a no thank you for the tenth time. Real life is full of criticism and disappointments.

      Yes, absolutely, I would rather be Kate any day of the week than Sam Cameron or any of her predesssors or any of the politican's spouses. One would think we were asking Kate to do something amazing like actually working full time. She has a very pampered life and she is taking full advantage of it.

      Yes, I am a royalist - always have been and always will be - but I'm a royalist who supports the queen because of her dedication to duty and her ability to make people feel she understands their lives and burdens and shares their concerns. I seem to find things backwards here - I thought it was the royal's job to support and encourage - not their subjects.

      Ironically, by living the life of the pampered rich while holding down a normal bloke's job, that's what William and Kate aren't yet doing. Perhaps they will in time but they have already had a lot of time. Ten years. I do have hopes for the future but I'm realistic enough to suspect that the monarchy of William and Kate won't involve the extreme devotion to duty of the queen - I like to think I'm wrong but if I don't see that at thirty, I'm wondering how they will find it in themselves at sixty.

      Yes, I can be a critic of any particular royal. I don't think that's bad for the institution of the monarchy - I don't think yes, Beatrice's upteen holidays are a good thing - we mustn't grumble.

      But the very thing republicans jump upon is the mindless support for the royals - that people do it without thinking - just fawners. I say, yes there is a purpose to royalty - a good and valuable purpose that justifies all their privilages - but they have to live up to the burdens that balance those privilages or they are just another set of celebrities - to be enjoyed and then discarded when their amusement value is gone.

      I trust no one will abdicate - royals who are no longer royals have a far less happy life for the most part than those who stay the course. There are some who chose to leave royal life - the Belgium prince recently who already has an established outside career, there are some who get booted like the Romanian heir but I suspect most royals think their benefits are worth the effort - after all, it is allowing William to fly - if he abdicated he would have to get a much different type of job to pay the rent bills for Anmer - if he was allowed to keep the house - no certain thing.


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