Friday, April 29, 2011

Some Thoughts on The Royal Wedding

I somehow feel embarrassed, but should admit my great excitement about  today's Royal Wedding. Royals  of all nations have never been a craze of mine, even though most behave sensibly and represent their countries appropriately. While I read an article or two about last year's nuptials of Princess Victoria of Sweden (who, by the way, is the direct heir of the throne and also married a commoner), and surely wished the couple well, the event did not touch me emotionally in any particular way.

So what is turning the UK Royal Wedding into a globally anticipated one? Is it Prince William's appeal as the "Prince of Hearts", which he somehow inherited from his mother, the late Lady Diana? Or is it Miss Catherine Middleton's natural beauty and engaging smile? How about their well-documented and long-lived romance? After all, they have been together for about 8 years and are still  in love. William has been known for his successful representation of Britain since long, and Catherine's few official pre-wedding public appearances made similarly good impression. 

The UK itself seems to be divided by the contrasting parties of proud well-wishers and glum "this-wedding-is-ruining-the-economy" complainers. The fact that the pair's families are covering the largest part of the expenses (if not all of them) does not help. Some people complain about keeping the monarchy at all, although many other respectable European countries also have reigning royal families.

Without being an expert, I see little difference between the roles of  elected presidents in parliamental republics and the hereditary European royals. Both have predominantly ambassadorial roles, and the main decisions are taken by the prime ministers and the parliaments. Such republics do spend millions on elections on a regular basis - salary and costs of the president including. The royals typically have funds of their own and in some cases even take normal employments. Prince William is a great example: he has a 40 hours-a-week job as a search and rescue pilot in Wales and seems to attend to his royal duties in his spare time. What is more, heirs of thrones and their children are being trained for their future role since early age, and are also very loyal to their countries.

Politics and state finances aside, today is a day to be remembered - and hopefully Prince William and Catherine will manage to enjoy it despite the whole world watching. All the best to them and their new family; may they keep their love alive and strong for all the years to come!

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