Tuesday, 20 March 2007
A Royal Visit
Today I met Princess Ann. I guess it is not everyday that you get to meet a member of the Royal family and it is not the first time that I have met her as she is the Patron of our professional association and attends many functions on our behalf. I don't what people imagine meeting a princess is like, but in practice it is about as uneventful as it can be. We have to arrive a little early and are supposed to abandon our most casual clothes in favour of something a little more smart. We have to sign in and prove who were are but apart from that the morning proceeds as normal, except just before she arrives there is a bit of tension and hesitation as the speakers look out for the sign that she is about to enter. As she does, we must all stand. She gave a brief speach; not one she had pre-prepared but one she had thought up on the spot. We were then whisked off to stand in small groups to be introduced. Unfortunately I needed to go to the toilet desperately at this point and almost breached protocol by nipping out to loo before she got to us! There were about 60 people in the room and she met, shook hands with and talked to everyone in about an hour. I thought that was pretty good going! We talked about how difficult it is to undo modern containers and I told her how my mother takes her jars into the greenhouse and uses my fathers old vice to open them. The meeting went better than the last time I met her! She turned to me, looked at my name badge and said 'So you are from Trumpton (sic)' and I was overcome by nerves and said 'Oh..how did you know that?'