Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Royal Visit: June 28-29, 2010

Born on 21 April 1926 in London, to The Duke and Duchess of York (who later became King George VI and Queen Elizabeth), Elizabeth Alexandra Mary married the Greek Prince, Lietenant Philip Mountbatten on 20 November 1947. After becoming Queen of England on 6 February 1952, she did some other stuff. Then finally, on 28 July 2010, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II came to Canada for the 22nd time, and I was there to see her.

While the weather the day before had been wonderful, God decided to frown upon Nova Scotia this day, and it seemed as though a hurricane was trying to blow through Halifax. Undaunted, I braved the torrential down pour, and gale force winds, to stand on a soggy hillside with the other "unworthies", as we waited for our chance to catch a glimpse of the ever present security guards huddled around Her Majesty The Queen.

Finally, after two hours of shivering, and a live interview on SRC television, I finally got my "once-in-a-lifetime" chance to wave at her from afar. And boy was it worth it. She spoke French and English better than Prime Minister Stephen Harper, and she was a model of grace and class, which we would all do well to copy. She truly loves Canada, and works tirelessly for the Empire, essentially for free (contrary to popular ignorance, "your tax dollars" do not go to Britain or The Queen).

(The pipes and drums of the 78th Highlanders enter the grounds.)

(Military band playing O Canada, while shots from the 21-gun salute continue to fire.)

(A Mi'kmaq elder greeting Her Majesty with a prayer. I apologize for the out of focus camera work. However, I can guarantee you won't see footage like this on CBC any time soon.)

(Prime Minister Stephen Harper welcomes Her Majesty to Canada. He even tries to says "Canadar" like a British person. Am I the only person who thinks this speech makes it sound like neither English or French is a first language for the PM?)

(Her Majesty The Queen gives a moving speech to those courageous and freezing souls who braved the elements to hear her speak.)

(Her Majesty, in the yellow hat, greeting visitors.)

(Her Majesty handing flowers to an aide, who in turn will hand them to a second aide. This is the only clear shot of The Queen's face I managed to capture.)

(Members of the Halifax Junior Bengal Lancers taking their horses out to go poop on the side-walks.)

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