Tuesday 19 April 2011

Q is for Queen

Nowadays, it seems to be the norm to moan about the royal family; to grumble at how much they cost, now rich they are, what privileged lives they lead. In short, to be curmugeonly republicans.

But I like the Queen. I think she's a good woman who works hard at a job she never chose and which she has to do until the day she dies. She seems to hold things together, especially at a time like the present, when "divide and rule" has taken on a whole new meaning under our coalition government.

Mind you, I don't think she's always right. I am appalled at the way the royal family have treated poor old Fergie, who has bounced in and (mainly) out of royal life like a cross between a large puppy and a bull in a china shop. Whatever she's done, does she really deserve to spend every Christmas on her own, and not be invited to the coming nuptials?

But while on the whole I approve of royalty, I am not sentimental about it, and I thought the outpouring of "grief" over the death of Princess Diana was sickly in the extreme. As my (then teenage) son said at the time: "Those people are not crying for Diana. They are crying for themselves". Having lost his father, he knew what grief was, and this most certainly wasn't it.

But the Diana-fest was not the Queen's fault, and I am happy for her to carry on for as long as she can. As for That Wedding, I shall certainly be watching it, and enjoying the frocks and the coaches and the horses (especially the horses), with my mad daughter and her family. (Daughter is exultant that, even after triplets, she can still squeeze into her wedding dress, and is determined to wear it on April 29. As you do.)


  1. Most interesting your post on The Queen. I agree with most of the post, but I was in London at the time of Diana's death and believe me the grief was REAL even my late husband commented on the fact and was visably upset.
    I look forward to The Royal Wedding next week , When Prince William gets married the memory of his mother Diana will be evident.

  2. Thank for your thoughtful reply, Yvonne. I absolutely respect your views on Diana's death. I wasn't in London, but know people who were. I just feel that that kind of grief is contagious; a few people start to weep, and the emotion ripples thought the crowds. In a way, it is dependent on numbers in a way that conventional grief is not. And it is also short-lived, while what I would call real grief is not. Deep, personal grief lasts for years. Our butcher told me that the day of Diana's death was "the worst day of his life", and yet a week later he was back to his usual cheery self.

    Hi, Patsy. Glad you agree!

  3. Disagree with you here Frances.

    The royals epitomize a dysfunctional family. I was moved by Dianna's death, for itself and that she was a victim of this dysfunctional family, as indeed is 'Fergie.' Will Kate fare better(?) - we shall wait and see.

    You state that (she) 'works hard at a job she never chose' and extrapolating this, to a life she never chose to belong to - but she does.

    I never 'chose' my station in life - but no-one can - but there the unity and the seperation of 'HM' and me ends.

    I know she exists - but she does not know of me.

    She is purely a figurehead and no more 'holds things together' than you or I do. She has no influence, no power and little if no interest in her 'people.'

    Despite the above - I love your blog!

    Anna :o]

    PS I am not a rampant socialist!

  4. I think you and I must hold the same feelings about the Monarchy. I'm not sentimental about it but I think it works. It always annoys me when people say we should get rid of it but they never say what they want in its place. Do we really want the same tired old politicians putting up for president?
    Be careful what you wish for.

  5. I am largely indifferent to the Royals. I wish them well, but they can get by just fine without my attention.

    Weddings at the best of times are pretty tedious, and I'll certainly be finding something else to do on the day. Nice to have a Bank Holiday though!

  6. Anna, I do agree that Diana was a victim of the system, and should never have been allowed so quickly especially as she was so young. There's plenty wrong with the royal family - I agree there, too - but you (well, maybe not you. I don't know enough about you. I, then) could choose a career in a way the queen could not, and what I like is that she is apolitical. But thanks for liking my blog, despite my views!

    Keith, I'm glad you agree (phew!).

    Tim, I think you are probably typical of many men. On the whole, not nearly so interested in things royal as are women. I suspect it's because we (women) are nosy, and like looking into other people's lives!

  7. I don't mean disrespect but I can't understand how Monarchy still exists--in the century 21st...

    Interesting discussion.


  8. I think the Queen adds something special to the country, but I was genuinely bemused by the public outpouring of grief for Diana (much as I felt sad for her and her children).

  9. I agree, Rosemary. It seemed to me to be very self-indulgent, but then maybe I'm just an old cynic...