How much are you hearing, in other parts of the world, about the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee? Queen Elizabeth II has been on the throne for an astonishing 60 years this year, and this weekend is her official jubilee celebration. Meaning, among other things, that it’s party time here in Britain for the next four days. We will be attending the jubilee party on the village green on Sunday, when it is forecast to rain (of course)–if only I’d known I would’ve gotten tickets for Saturday instead.
The Queen herself will be celebrating by attending the Epsom Derby tomorrow, and on Sunday will be part of a 1,000 ship flotilla down the Thames. (Organizers are quite worried that this won’t go off without a hitch: the flotilla was originally limited to 60 boats, but grew, and grew, and grew. The Thames is not that wide.) It’s going to be quite the spectacle, with gun salutes, church bells pealing, rowboats, pleasure boats, fire boats, old boats (including some used in the 1940 evacuation of Dunkirk), and the Queen herself on the royal barge. Someone we know in the village is in charge of not only steering one of those boats down the Thames, but also of making sure none of the boat captains are drunk before they head off (1,000+ boats? this could take two days to ensure).
My kids have been making bunting all week (this nation is currently covered in bunting) for their school parties and both had little picnics on the school lawn this afternoon. There’s even been a bit of crown decorating: James’s crown (photo below) says “long lived the kink.”
My kids have also learned to sing “God Save the Queen,” which led to James asking me on the way home from school today, “Why did God save the Queen?” Well, um, James … ask your father.