Apart from the Olympics, there’s another reason for the British to celebrate this year! The Queen celebrates 60 years of reigning, her Diamond Jubilee! 60 years? Imagine that! According to the omnipotent Wikipedia she was born in 1926 and her coronation took place in June the 2nd 1953 following the death of her father, George VI the previous year! She was so young when she became a Queen, only 27! She’s the second longest reigning monarch of the United Kingdom after Victoria. If she keeps this up, and I believe that she will, for a couple more years, she’ll beat Victoria no doubt!
So, London and I assume the rest of the country and maybe parts of the Commonwealth (?) are getting dresses in red, white and blue with Union Jack decorations everywhere. The formal celebrations started earlier this year with the Queen controversially hosting all monarchs of the world, the most exclusive member’s club ever, in a formal luncheon in Buckingham Palace. Various other formal events took place earlier this year.
Lego Queen at the Hamleys
However, this weekend is the public’s turn to celebrate. Normally we have a bank holiday the last Monday of May, however, this was transferred to this Monday and due to the Jubilee, we got Tuesday the 5th as well! So, we have a 4-day long weekend ahead of us! Hooray! During this weekend, there’s a massive boat parade on Sunday on the Thames with the Queen also on a boat waving at the crowds. There are numerous street parties organised around the country and a massive concert with popular names (Kylie, Robbie, Tom Jones, Elton John etc) singing in front of the Buckingham Palace for some lucky ones who received a ticket through a ballot.
1953 - Coronation day
I can’t say I’m a royalist. I grew up in a country that turned its back to Monarchy and told the former King Constantine to simply pack his bags and leave, a decade before I was even born. However, I give them credit when needed. I love getting extra days off work. Last year we had the Royal wedding, this year we have the Jubilee! What’s not to like? To me, they are like posh celebrities. They do cost lots of money to the tax payers but act as proper tourist attractions! PS. Harry’s turned up to be very good looking.
Queen picture from the Silver Jubilee celebration (1977)
The Queen lives a very fascinating life, or at least used to when she was younger. She’s travelled all over the world and must have met the most numerous people than anyone alive from country leaders to artists to everyone! I wouldn’t like to be in her shoes though. She’s constantly under scrutiny, on the spotlight and having to cover up and be reliable for the whole family’s scandals and dirty stories. It also must not be very easy trying to keep some balances. Imagine that she had to deal with Churchill at a very young age or Thatcher later on. There are so many conspiracy theories around her, with the death of Diana being the most famous one.
Anyway, I hope you have a great weekend! See you soon.