As I write this, I'm watching the coverage of the wedding of Mr. Charles Windsor and Ms Camila Parker-Bowles on CNN.
I'm happy for them. I am sick unto death of jokes about her appearance. So what if she's not the movie-star beauty that Princess Diana was? She's still a handsome, strong, dare I say beautiful woman in her own right. Such jokes are obnoxious, sexist, and just plain mean.
I think it's wonderfully romantic that, separated by forced marriages to others by reasons of Church and State, they loved each other all these years and are now able to get married to each other as they apparently always wanted to do in the first place.
During all the kerfuffle about Prince Charles' and Princess Diana's bad marriage, Charles came off the bad guy. I'm sorry I ever thought of him that way. Obviously both he and Diana were a poor fit for each other from the start, and nobody was "bad", their personalities just didn't mesh. If anyone was inappropriate, in retrospect, it was the stuffy Royal Advisers (and the Queen and Prince Phillip themselves? I don't know) who wouldn't give consent to Charles marrying the woman he really loved.
I think the idea of the civil ceremony followed by a religious blessing of the union is a lovely compromise, given the tangle of religious and constitutional issues created by the fact that the Queen is the head of the state Church of England. Those sort of dual services would also solve the "problem" of same-sex marriage in this country, if everybody would get the heads out the nether places of religious bigotry and unreasonable sense of self-threat.
Finally, its kinda neat to see this from the perspective of having walked the streets of New Windsor, and toured Windsor Castle (including, as I've previously mentioned elsewhere, the Queen Mother's elevator and the Royal Utility Room containing the Royal Clothes Washing Machine and Royal Clothes Dryer). This is happening at a place where my family and I have been ourselves, which enables me to identify with it in a way that I wasn't able for the wedding of Charles and Diana, as I hadn't yet been to England at that time.