Yes, I’m watching the royal wedding this morning. Well, I’ll be recording it this morning, since work and taking Mira to preschool will be cutting into my royal TV time.
I know some people can’t wait for the wedding to be over with, but I’m giddy with excitement. Truth is, when storks were dropping off babies in the 70′s, my stork clearly read the address wrong and brought me to Ohio when I should have been delivered to some family in the British Isles.
I’ve been an anglophile for many, many years, appreciating nearly everything about the British people, culture and government. I spent a summer in London in college, and during my time there I felt more “at-home” with my surroundings than I ever have in my life. I considered skipping my flight home to pursue citizenship, but came to my senses when I realized I had no money and still no college degree yet. I left that country vowing to return again someday.
When Diana Spencer walked down the aisle to become Princess Diana? I watched it. I was proud that her first-born son, William, was born on my birthday. (Although a few years later than me.) During my time in England, I lived in a dorm in Kensington and remember playing soccer on the green just outside of Diana’s primary residence, Kensington Palace.
Many years later, when Diana was in the car accident that took her life, I watched the story unfold on CNN. I wished and prayed that she would survive, and then sobbed when they announced that she had died. I watched her funeral from start to finish, stunned that this stunningly beautiful humanitarian – a woman who used her power and influence to bring notice to those who suffered and needed help – would be taken from us so young.
And now her son is marrying his college sweetheart, and I couldn’t be happier for them. The royal family may seem like an out-of-place establishment in the modern world, but I think it still has relevance. They provide a living connection to the history and very nature of their culture. And as I’ve often joked, a monarch that is groomed from the beginning for their role in the government (even if it is a very minor role now) provides stability and continuity that I often feel is lacking in our constantly rotating parade of politicians in the United States. Prime Ministers may come and go, but they have the benefit of seeking advice from the one person who has seen the government through many changes and is well-educated on the topic.
(I don’t want to get into an argument over which government system is better or calling for a return to the feudal monarchy system - I’m just pointing out that there are some advantages to a constitutional monarchy.)
Anyway, I’m looking forward to the wedding. I can’t wait to see demonstrations of the history, ceremony and style of the British people, but even more, it’s about the pleasure of seeing the genuine happiness of two people who love each other very much making the ultimate commitment to each other.
And to get in the spirit, Mira is already practicing her royal stiff upper-lip while wearing her tiara. She’s available for any discussions of betrothal contracts with princes who like trains and can promise her lots of dresses and a pink castle.