As I have blogged on here before I am currently the chairman of the Royal Windsor Rose and Horticultural Society. On Monday we had the very great privilege of meeting our Patron, Her Majesty The Queen.
Her Majesty was celebrating the first official event of her Jubilee year with a ‘walk-about’ in Windsor town centre. As part of this she had asked to meet members of the Societies that she was a Patron of. The Queen is the 6th sovereign that has been Patron of the Society and we were thrilled to be able to say thank you to her.
As well as the Committee we asked the youngest member to win a class at last years show, 6 year old Scarlett Gognar, to present Her Majesty with a rose bouquet.
Over 4,000 people lined Windsor town centre in a carnival mood with flags to wave and a brass band to entertain them. In a month of persistent rain we were blessed with a single day of spring sunshine and we waited outside Henry VIII gate of Windsor Castle for The Queen.
A cheer went up as the Queens State car emerged from the castle and she alighted to be met by the Lord Lieutenant and the Mayor. She was then introduced to her Societies, we were 3rd in line.
The experience of meeting the Queen is quite surreal. Firstly one is nervous. I had to introduce her to 10 people all whose names I was convinced I would forget. Secondly she is so familiar to oneself that you feel you know her well but of course you are a complete stranger to her. Thirdly you must remember protocol; Wait for her to offer her her hand, never lead the conversation, bow…but not too deeply, address her firstly as Your Majesty and thereafter as Ma’am (as in Ham) .
With all this going on in your mind suddenly the moment is upon you and just as suddenly it is gone. Passing like summer breeze, a moment of rapture…you have just had face time with arguably the most famous and most respected person on the planet. You have been touched by history.