Tuesday 9 May 2023

Vivat Rex! Good boy

(Coronation photos stolen from The Times)

Since Rex was the name of our family dog, that chanted phrase meant something a bit different to me, during the Coronation. But he was a spaniel, so there was a connection to King Charles. Sucked in to watching the whole event (on TV, natch, but live) my main impression, as with I'm sure most people, was - What a load of old codswallop. 

I mean, all those fancy costumes, every stitch of them loaded with tradition and meaning. All that silly ceremony - did you see the ring presented fitted onto a pink velvet dildo? - and juggling with unwieldy crowns that were so impractical, despite/because of all their huge jewels, that both king and queen shook them off as soon as possible. All the parading, the hours of practice it all took, the swords, the medals, the patently ridiculous and vision-blocking bearskin hats. It was daft, the whole thing, truly. And yet - of course there's an 'and yet' - it was a pretty gobsmacking spectacle.

What made it more appealing was that so much of it looked so familiar. Though it almost feels like another life - it was certainly in the Before Times - I was last in London in 2019 and spent a wonderful day visiting most of those sites, from Buckingham Palace to Westminster, and many points in between (and beyond). It was a big, big day, and I wrote a long, long post about it. It is a great city, and despite the very typical rain, it was the perfect setting for all that pomp.

Though everyone else looked like they were having a good time, Charles did appear somewhat sombre throughout. The weight of royal responsibility, I guess, even more than the actual weight of all those robes and crowns, heavy though they must have been. I reckon, despite a lifetime's preparation and waiting, he would much rather not have been the centre of all that attention. And who could blame him? I too prefer to be just one of the crowd, as was he the first time I (failed to) notice him, at Badminton Horse Trials, many years ago.

1 comment:

the queen said...

You inspired me to go through my cache of London photos! My post tomorrow.


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