Here’s a quick update on the last part of Day 2 of Prince William and Kate Middleton‘s royal tour of India on April 11. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge attended a garden party in honor of the Queen’s 90th birthday at the residence of the British High Commissioner in New Delhi.
William and Kate chatted to some of the 2,000 attendees from the worlds of politics, business, the armed forces, and academia while the band played a medley of Bond themes. Food included canapes of Murg Malai Tikka, Aloo Sabutdana Ki Tikki and apple Stilton Welsh Rarebits, mini beer battered fish and chips, and thin crust cheese and tomato pizza.
One guest Kate talked to was Professor Bulbul Dhar-James, who teaches political science at Jamia Mellia Islamia university. Dhar-James said:
“We said ‘how do you lose all the weight after having two kids?’ And she said ‘I am running after my kids’. I asked her ‘aren’t you tired of smiling?’ And she said ‘I’m just reciprocating. Everyone is so warm’. They were both really gracious. She was so welcoming and warm. We told her ‘You look much better in person than in your photographs’.”
Kate also talked to Venu Nair, MD of Marks and Spencer in India, who said:
“The Duchess was really interested to hear about Marks and Spencer here in India and our 53 stores. She was asking about our operations here and how they differed from the UK. I would never have dared asked her where her dress was from!”
Deepa Thomas Sutcliffe, VP and Head of Communications Nissan and married to Paul Sutcliffe from British High Commission, said:
“I told the Duchess I have been a huge Royal fan my whole life and I adored Princess Diana. I was five years old when she married. [Kate] said ‘unfortunately I never had the pleasure of meeting her’. We also talked about Mumbai and she said ‘Mumbai is fantastic. We had a lovely time and got to sample lots of things, even a bit of cricket.’
“It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience. I am star struck actually. I never thought I’d get to speak to her. I think the royal couple are gorgeous, down to earth and very modern. The older royals are very stiff upper lip but the Duke and Duchess are willing to talk to anybody. I think they are a big hit so far. India is very heavily influenced by the British and there is a huge respect for the British Royal family.”
[all quoted from Daily Mail]
William gave a speech paying tribute to the Queen:
“Tonight, we are celebrating the links between our two countries. This is the first time Catherine and I have been to India and we have been incredibly impressed to see just how much this great country is on the move, and how India’s dynamism is matched by the warmth and welcome of its diverse people. I am honoured that we also have a chance, tonight, to celebrate a very happy milestone for the United Kingdom and for my family in particular.
“Next week, Her Majesty The Queen, my grandmother, turns 90. I am so grateful to all of you for turning out tonight to help us mark that occasion. The Queen is very fond of India, having visited this great country three times during her reign. And India of course is the biggest country in the Commonwealth, the family of nations to which she has committed so much of her life’s work. India’s contribution to the Commonwealth is something that is enormously important to her. As my grandmother’s birthday gives us a chance to celebrate the partnership between our nations, I hope you don’t mind if I take the opportunity to pay tribute to The Queen on a more personal note.
“I am incredibly lucky to have my grandmother in my life. As she turns 90, she is a remarkably energetic and dedicated guiding force for her family. And I am so glad that my children are having the chance to get to know The Queen. George and Charlotte, too, will discover how lucky they are to have such a wonderful great-grandmother – a role model for the rest of their lives.”
William also read a message from HM:
“Now, it is important that everyone here tonight understands that I am here as The Queen’s representative. She may be my grandmother, but she is also very much the boss! And with that in mind, she has given me a message that I am privileged to read out to you all tonight:
“‘Prince Philip and I send our warmest good wishes to all you attending this special Garden Party. I am delighted that The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have been able to join you this afternoon during their visit to your country. I have fond memories of our previous visits to India. This event today is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the enduring friendship between our two countries, our shared culture and the business opportunities we can create together. It is with great pleasure that I entrust another generation of my family to strengthen and renew our bonds. Signed, Elizabeth R.’
“Now I can report back to Granny that I have done my duty!”
[from the DM linked above]
William and Kate were asked to cut a birthday cake for the Queen with a sword, which William immediately handed to a surprised Kate.
Kate wore a new embroidered Temperley London “Delphia crop top” ($1,525) and “Delphia long skirt” ($2,995). The crop top plus maxi skirt is a new choice for Kate, but (IMO) ugly designs from Temperley are not. I’ll be up front, I don’t like Temperley’s designs. At all. This one is… eh, whatever.
Kate debuted another new clutch, this one from Prada in black with a jewel clasp (£ 940). She also debuted another new pair of black sandals.
Kate’s earrings are from at least 2007 and have never been identified. They resurfaced when she wore them to Christmas lunch at BP in 2014.
On a positive: I like Kate’s hair.