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Prince Charles and Camilla

Meeting Prince Charles: A royal fan’s experience

Laurie Doyle, a registered nurse from Lousiville and avid Royal watcher, could not believe her luck on Friday afternoon. What began as a chilly day standing in front of the Cathedral of the Assumption turned into shaking the hand of the future King of England complete with a proper curtsey. Laurie, a Royal Central reader, was kind enough to discuss her experience with me.

Laurie your Twitter name is Royally Obsessed in the US, just how obsessed are you?

Being, “Royalobsessed” is a hobby. I enjoy Royal-watching and have discovered a lot of people on Twitter have the same interest and admiration of the British Royal Family as I do.

What started your interest in the Royal Family?

What started my interest in the Royal Family was when Charles and Diana married. I was about five years old and a kindergartener. My mother woke me up at 5 am and told me to be very quiet, and I could watch a Prince and Princess get married. Since then, I have watched all the Royal Weddings, including Prince Andrew/ Sarah Ferguson, and the Earl and Countess of Wessex. I also watched all that was televised the day Charles and Camilla wed. So naturally, when William and Kate married, I woke my then 8-year-old daughter, Megan, up at 3:30 am and she got to stay home from school and watch the wedding. I suppose we will do the same with Prince Harry!

Did you have an inclination you would see The Prince of Wales that close, much less shake his hand?

When I woke up Friday morning, I felt a bit frustrated because I wasn’t sure I would able to find them. They were to be at so many places in such a short amount of time that I almost considered staying put at home. Plus, the weather was so chilly and damp! But I thought better of it, thankfully, and set off for the Cathedral of the Assumption and found a good spot that I supposed I might have a good view.

The Prince of Wales meeting those gathered before entering the Cathedral.

The Prince of Wales meeting those gathered before entering the Cathedral.

Describe what was going through your mind when you met Prince Charles? What did you say to him? Did he say anything in particular to you?

When he got out of the car, he walked straight ahead toward the church. I was slightly disappointed but also happy that I at least was able to see him closely. But then, he suddenly turned and walked right toward me. He extended his hand and thanked me for waiting in the cold. I shook his hand and managed to get a quick curtsey before saying, “It’s my pleasure Your Highness.” It felt a little silly as this is something I’ve never done or said as an American, but I know it was correct to do so I felt okay about it. He made direct eye contact and had a very firm handshake, of course.

The handshake of a lifetime. Laurie meets Prince Charles.

The handshake of a lifetime. Laurie meets Prince Charles.

Of course, this question must be asked as readers will want to know. Who is your favourite Royal and why?

My favorite Royal is a very difficult question. Before Diana passed, it would have been her. I would have to say then both of her two boys. That’s her legacy. That’s her legacy with Charles. Whatever happened to them, they did a wonderful job raising them both. Harry is fun loving and likes to push the envelope, but has also proved he can be serious and work hard. William, I think is more serious and protective, but is shy and has a fun sense of humor. I tend to think they are the best of each of their parents. I know Diana would have been extremely proud of how they turned out.

Overall what did you think of Prince Charles and The Duchess of Cornwall’s visit to Kentucky?

I was disappointed they only stayed in Louisville a short time, and I would have loved for them to come in May, when the town is ready to receive Derby guests. However, the short time (12 or so hours) was jam-packed. I’m not sure how they found the energy to keep going the way they did all day long. I think it’s very admirable that instead of going to all of the glitzy places that people tend to want to go/see/do in Louisville, the events they chose were causes that were near and dear to their hearts. That says a lot about them. They work very hard for their charities and seem to take a genuine interest in their causes.

Royal Central extends its thanks to Laurie for sharing her photos and, of course, treasured memories of the day she met the future King!

Photos courtesy of Laurie Doyle.


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