I watched yesterdays proceedings with a mixture of awe and pride. I watched it and then I thought, why? Why do it like this?
This was a funeral for a Queen but how much did we learn about her during the services? She was also a mother, a grandmother and great grandmother but where were the tales about her, the things you might hear at a normal funeral?
Of course we have heard them all over the last ten days as endless celebrities and members of this or that company or household have been trotted out to tell us about how much she loved horses and dogs and Balmoral, but where, amidst all the pomp, was there a human factor?
Perhaps it’s not the done thing but why couldn’t Harry have told us a funny story, or William? Or someone with something real to say other than the usual pompous drudgery, no matter how worthy, of the religious leaders. How peoples hearts might have been lifted if, instead of another reading by a monotone politician or another hymn nobody had heard of, the Archbishop had said, “And now, a personal story from …” to lighten the mood and remind us of the woman behind the crown.
I know these things are imbued with ceremony and solemnity and perhaps the tales are spoken in private, far beyond the ears of mere humble mortals, but sometimes, just sometimes, especially if you wish to modernise the monarchy, starting with something that we can all relate to, the personal story, isn’t a bad way to start.
But now we look forward to the reign of Charles 3rd. His lip biting and grief during yesterday will linger long in the memory but I wish him well. He has big shoes to fill and I hope he can fill them. I am sure he can if he is allowed to and not weighed down by needless petty fighting.
God save the King and thank you Ma’am for your years of dedicated service to the country. Rest easy beside your beloved husband, secure in the knowledge that your reign was both long and glorious.