HLRGazette Archives

Relive some of our best stories.

  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

A Texas Two Step

E-mail Print PDF

Royal Wedding


The Gazette Staff

Alright, I confess. I watched the Royal Wedding.

For one thing, I get up very early in the morning and there was little else to watch on the television. But that's not really the reason I watched.

We've had almost three years of very bad news, disasters and near-calamities. So it was high time to indulge in something lighthearted and pretty although I realize this kind of pabulum does distract us from the terrible problems facing us right now as a nation. However, the wedding was basically a one-day distraction and definitely filled the bill in terms of glamour, pomp and circumstance, plus trivial gossip.

I am not a newcomer to royal watching. When I was in first grade, the young Queen Elizabeth visited Canada, where I grew up. My first grade teacher bundled us into a bus and drove us to Dorval Airport near Montreal. She lined us up at the edge of a round-about (translation – traffic circle) that led out of the airport. The Queen's cortege drove slowly by us and she waved at us from just a few feet away.

I got another close-up years later, albeit an unexpected one. My English cousin took me to see Buckingham Palace on my first trip to London. We were standing by a large gate peering in, when, to our amazement, the gate swung slowly open and a big black Daimler moved slowly toward us.

A moment later, I found myself staring down at the Queen who waved and smiled at me. She, as always, was beautifully groomed and still a handsome woman. She must have laughed at what had to be a stunned expression on my face.

By the time Diana Spencer married Charles, I was living in Manhattan. The ceremony began around 5 a.m. and I got up to watch it – partly out of feminine curiosity about The Gown and partly for the music. I've never been much of a fan of Prince Charles for several reasons, but he is known to love music. I had heard that he had selected the music for the ceremony and it was every bit as glorious as I had expected, including a wonderful piece by opera luminary, Kiri Te Kanewa.

Last Friday's event proved once again that no one can touch the Brits when it comes to ceremony and protocol. The music was traditional English hymns and tunes. The abbey choir was perfection. The bride and groom were composed and very elegant. The gown was beautiful and the flowers were the essence of simplicity.

The hats of the female guests were fun to see, ranging from pretty, to whimsical and some that were almost bizarre.

Britons filled the streets, enjoying a break from the rigors of austerity to celebrate their thousand-year monarchy. An aura of real happiness seemed to emanate from the event and the bride's family seemed amazingly relaxed. The ceremony itself unfolded with such precision that one commentator said he wished the government would hire those who produced the wedding to manage the railway system!