On Saturday we Brits begin a long 4 days of Royalist celebration. We don’t have an Independence Day on an annual basis, but make up for it with occasional Jubilees that celebrate the monarch’s ascension to the throne. This year, if you didn’t already know, is the Queen’s 60th year as head of state. Her Diamond Jubilee. Only the second Diamond Jubilee to have ever occurred, in a thousand years of the monarchy. Neither kings nor queens usually make it this far. It’s just Victoria and now Elizabeth.
Not everyone in the UK is a monarchist, though Lizzie is enjoying unprecedented popularity at the moment. It’s to be expected – we get an extra Bank Holiday thrown in this year for free, just for this occasion. But whether you’re a republican minded person, or a die hard royalist, it’s undeniable that as a human being she has had an impressive and fascinating life. Priveliged, also. But still, undeniably impressive. The people she has met, the places she has seen – worthy of an encyclopaedia.
The Golden Jubilee, ten years ago, was a pretty spectacular affair. There’s no Concorde fly past this time, but there is a 1,000 boat flotilla on the River Thames to keep us entertained. Me and Mrs P will be there, bright and early to (hopefully) get a good pitch on one of the bridges. It’s going to be a huge weekend, and I’m looking forward to being there to enjoy it. Needless to say, heavy downpours are forecast. God, it so turns out, is a Republican.