In Her Words
Memories of Diana on Prince Charles’ Birthday
A new poll shows the Prince is more popular than ever
-Myrna Blyth, Blyth times
Prince Charles is sixty today. Does that make you feel old? I doubt it. Because whether you are younger or older than Charles he has always been able to make other people feel young because, in comparison, he seems so old-fashioned and stuffy. At the moment, though, Charles is more popular than he has been in quite a while especially since those dark Diana days. In fact, a new poll found that more people (42 percent) were in favor of him succeeding the Queen rather than his photogenic son William (35 percent).
At sixty, Charles, although he remains awkward and often petulant, seems to have finally come into his own. He is married to Camilla, the woman he always loved. One of his longtime interests, organic farming, has proved prescient. And his countrymen have some sympathy for the Prince who has waited years and years and years to become King. He is the LONGEST serving king-in-waiting in British history.
But, oh, remember, the intrigue, the drama of his marriage to Diana, the fairy tale that turned into a soap opera and ended with a tragedy. She was a world-wide superstar, beautiful and fascinating to the media. Charles, who, by all accounts, is a very ordinary man, was made even more ordinary by her style and personality.
I met Diana twice. Once, very early in their marriage at a dance at Alpthop, the house in which they spent their wedding night. She was very young, very beautiful in a silver one-shouldered dress and seemed to be trying so hard to please her Prince. I met her again years later, just a few months before her death. She was a self-possessed woman then, giving a speech about the dangers of land mines. The lovestruck young Princess was long gone.
Camilla is giving Charles a birthday party at High Grove and Rod Stewart is entertaining. The Brits say the Queen, who is eighty-two, will never abdicate for her son. She likes being Queen. Her mother lived past one hundred. And so Charles, with a stiff upper lip, may continue to wait for many more birthdays.