In Medias Res

Hard, if not impossible to escape-it`s everywhere! Starting in New York-every person I met : "Oh you`re British?....are you going to watch 'the' wedding".  "What Wedding"? I replied, sincerely puzzled,  until I saw their  disappointed faces that I may be an impostor...."oh.... "  I said  "that wedding"?  Having just arrived in New York from a conference in Boston and having far too many details to focus and navigate for myself, I had been blissfully unaware of all the fuss.  Now, unless I went to Mars, I could not miss it.  I even found myself walking through the bluebells of Middleton Woods yesterday which then led into a lengthy discussion about The Middletons, including Kate`s father being born in Leeds and having a long history around here with the Luptons.
        After the sixth time of being asked about the day, annoyance was starting to set in and my brow instantly furrowed at the slightest hint of the royal event.  For my own peace of mind, however, I decided to find a way to balance this mania and to see these days of wedding madness as a minor anthropological field-trip into the oddities of mass hysteria--sorry--interest in these homegrown celebrities--I mean--royals.  Since returning to the UK it seems like, as a participant observant, I´ve  been able to experience the whole gamut of emotions from annoyance, rejection, idle curiosity, puzzlement, denial, boredom, humor, hilarity to a somewhat more somber tone and thoughts of stability verses wild romance, status verses abandonment, passivity verses activity of women. 
        Class, has featured prominently in my thoughts as well, as it has with others.  I couldn`t help but laugh at T-shirts that had been printed for masses to wear proudly with the words "I am a commoner".  Classless Britain?--I don`t think so.
     Being in a kind of self-imposed exile in Austria allows a critical distance that would otherwise be difficult to achieve.  People seem to be in need of saviors. Since 2008, all those that elevated Obama to the status of Jesus have been hugely disappointed.   By perching someone too high on a pedestal, the fall can terribly great. 
Having grandparents that are royalty--the Pearly kind--having raised money for national charities all their lives and being honored by the queen for their philanthropic duties, I have understood first-hand, the pressure to perform, represent family values, be a saviour, somebody people can look up to.  If you cannot live up to that image or disappoint, if even just a fraction, your life will be judged and scrutinised to the nth degree.  That alone can be the source of breakups and breakdowns and sometimes loss.

Presented recently, from my grandmother, with a vignette montage of Princess Diana on the occasion of her visit to Northampton June 8th 1989--where both my mother and grandmother were brought-up--when she was given the Freedom of Northampton, I have been contemplating what freedom means.  Freedom can be as simple as lying under the fresh spring blossom or an afternoon with my ninety-one year old grandmother.   Such pleasures not everyone is free to enjoy.

Capable as we are in saving ourselves, through collective organisation, on a grand scale is becoming more and more evident as we inch towards Friday 29th-which incidentally makes the number 11--a master number, spiritual in effect. This number has been symbolically referred to in various literary references such as Joyce`s Finegans Wake. Mentioned as the number that is strengthened by peace and insight; it is a spirit changer and the number of light within us all. 11 sheds light on our duel natures of destruction and creation.  If we are capable of coming together in peace, celebration, delight and adoration on such a grand scale not only nationally but also globally for such an event, perhaps this strength in numbers can gather collectively for even more consequential episodes making our shared history, great.