'Your presence is requested by the most esteemed Duchess of Norwich - upon - the - Thames' is how the formal invitation might have read. But old-world formality has been dispensed in this occasion and the modern courtesies are found in the the déclassé commoner devices known as phones and e-mails. So in order not to be bound by queenly protocol, we arranged a meeting with Duchess Linda yesterday in Waterford (not County Cork) at stone faced moderately priced chain serving Italian style cuisine. Only 55 miles away to my first meeting with Linda, blogger extraordinaire and royalty (a Duchess is royalty akin to AA or AAA in baseball, I'm guessing).
Although not a blueblood, the castle gate was opened for myself and Allegra with the assistance of Princess Patti. The major faux pas when invited by the royal class is to not be late. However we spent too much time in traffic due to the very un-royal masses on the chase to lose cash at alarming rates at the CT casinos. We would be late to this meeting due to NY and NJ gamblers, but the Duchess was most kind about this, and there would be no penalties for our error. Like how innocuous the sign is referring to these gambling palaces as mere 'reservations'...
That said, the meeting was as fun as expected. My princess had already met the Duchess and Queen Mimi previously. Linda was as expected, a member of the upper crust without pretense (or a tiara). We were seated and served by excellent wait staff member Michelle, who provided wonderful service with a smile, not a cliche here. A toast for the grownups was had. Yet, not knowing if protocol allowed for Allegra, aka Lady A, to toast with mere strawberry lemonade. Not knowing the score, we demurred.
I was under the impression that royalty was expected to behave in a stiff formality, bowing down to the proper use of language and pinky finger placement. Certainly not to engage in mere plebeian laughter. However, that convention was discarded, and the royals had a splendid time, disregarding their time-in waiting grooming. As did I, forgetting to bow at our first meeting. All was forgiven!
The food was quite good, but the camaraderie even better. A time not only to meet a fellow blogger we enjoy visiting on the screen with a keen interest in American history who makes me want to tour Gettysburg and Boston with a serious eye to discovering the historical factoids left out of history textbooks. College age Lady A has a great interest in history, and chimed in as well.
Coffee, cappuccino and tiramisu were the perfect accompaniment to end a fine meal. We agreed to meet in our burg of Ansonia in the future, agreeing that this was a fine meeting and conversation and it shall continue. Upon our departure, we took pictures of the setting sky and moon in the skies.
Sky shots this nice provide the right backdrop to a great time.
I must confess to a most startling discovery: Royals don't have to be haughty, you know. And it is a fine thing indeed for the mingling of the classes...