Wills and Kate to get hooked. Nation awfully chuffed

Having a Brit contributing to 'In All Things' means you have to put up with strange spellings, endless reports on indecisive Anglicans with their toes in the Tiber, and .... stories about the Royal Family. 

Except there haven't been any. Not for a long time. Not since the Queen Mother died and Charles married Camilla, but that wasn't worth getting too excited about.

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So this afternoon's news that Prince William and his longstanding (on-off-on-off) girlfriend Kate Middleton are engaged -- eight years, they've kept us waiting; eight years, I ask you! --  has provoked general rejoicing and a little of that forgotten British habit of being frightfully pleased about royal news.

Turns out Wills popped the question while the couple, both 28, were sojourning among the lions and elephants of Kenya last month. He offered her the engagement ring belonging to his mother, Diana, Princess of Wales. They're planning to marry in summer next year.

The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh are "absolutely delighted" by the news, the Prince of Wales "thrilled", the parents of Kate Middleton "absolutely delighted", the Archbishop of Canterbury "delighted" (etc. There is an upper-class British convention that only certain adjectives will do on such occasions.)

David Cameron, the Prime Minister, who was given the news during a Cabinet meeting, said the announcement was met with "a great cheer" by his ministers as well as a "great banging of tables".

And an email has just popped into my inbox with a statement from  Archbishop Vincent Nichols of Westminster, on behalf of the Catholic bishops of England and Wales. He too is, er, "delighted". And wishes them "every happiness in their married life together."

Special extended TV news tonight. The BBC and ITV have put pre-prepared documentaries into the schedule. The Daily Mail is already speculating on the dress (a fishtail-style gown, hand-embroidered). 

In other words: off we go. Britain's best-known export is back in business. 

Naturally, your correspondent has other things on his mind -- not least what plans the bishops are laying at their plenary meeting for the new Ordinariate. (They are making an announcement Friday morning.)

But in the meantime I am, of course -- how to put it? -- delighted.

 

 

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Vince Killoran
7 years 10 months ago
Any chance this silly, costly monarchy might call it a day?
Gabriel McAuliffe
7 years 10 months ago
I am not a great fan of the British monarchy either.  However, the last comment was pretty crummy.  Can't you be happy for the couple? 

Oh well.

I thought the news was delightful.  Cheers!
7 years 10 months ago
Some of these comments are further proof that liberals really aren't very fun(ny).
Vince Killoran
7 years 10 months ago
C'mon Jeff-now it's your turn to "lighten up."  It's all liberals versus conservatives in your world, no matter the topic.
Vince Killoran
7 years 10 months ago
Thanks Abe-now that's funny!

Yes, Gabriel, I'm happy for the couple (absoultely delighted, in fact) but I am for all couples  getting hitched.

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