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Royal wedding exhaustion
Today, Prince William married Kate Middleton. Thank goodness. The media has been flogging this horse for so long and with such intensity, I'm amazed that it is still alive. I've even heard that Americans, who usually lap up anything royal with delight, are getting rather tired of the non-stop media hype.
I walked past Westminster Abbey this week, where the world's media were setting up and recording their non-stop commentaries to beam back home. There were also people camping out to bag the best spots to watch the comings and goings. There were all sorts, from simple royalists to gaudily-dressed eccentrics. These folks were manna from heaven for the media and the brighter the garb, the longer the queue of foreign interviewers waiting for a few words of banal enthusiasm.
Further on, I saw a team of police officers dismantling a phone box, presumably just in case it was packed with explosives. Sadly also, the police seem to increasingly be carrying guns on all kinds of occasions. With all the heads of state and royalty, the police were probably very nervous today, but thankfully there were no significant incidents.
Reputedly, the whole affair cost 20 million pounds to put on. But then the PR for the country is probably worth it. We'll surely get a good return on the investment. Just the spending of all the people who travelled here, let alone selling of memorabilia, future visits and so on. The royal family are a cost to the nation, but I think they generally give very good value for money.
The coverage today was endless and you could see the journalists desperately seeking anything to talk about. There were 40,000 people in Hyde Park alone, where big screens and hot-dog stands were vying for the consumers' attention. Roaming reporters stalked the crowds, looking for human interest stories. And of course there were plenty of enthusiastic people who were happy to be on the telly and tell the same stories of getting up early and how it was nice to have good news for a change.
And amidst it all, a young couple got married.
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