Included in the parcel of plastic bags from Carina was this lovely photo of the Danish Royal family. Both Carina and I were born in Denmark and have English husbands.
Mary Crown Princess, Frederik Crown Prince of Denmark, Margrethe II, Queen of Denmark and Henrik Prince of Denmark. Taken at Amalienborg Palace, the 14th of May, 2004.
Mary was born and bred in Tasmania, Australia. Note the sprig of eucalyptus leaves in her bouquet.
In 2005, "Our Mary", as she's affectionately called here in Australia, and her Crown Prince Frederik, came to Australia for a visit. My father invited myself and my husband to a Royal cocktail party at Guillaume at Bennelong, Sydney Opera House.
It was a beautiful, balmy, late-summer evening. The Opera house looked magical with twinkling lights on the harbour. Approximately 100 expat Danes attended the party, so it was a relatively small gathering. The expat Danish community in Sydney is very small.
The Royal party arrived at the foot of the Opera house with flashing lights and a modest entourage in tow. There was a hushed silence as the Royals entered but a few seconds later many of the guests descended on the couple, like vultures. I felt sorry for them and decided to stay back to give them room to breathe. Mary was dressed in the most exquisite pale lilac, silk suit with a jewel encrusted belt (Oscar de la Renta) looking radiant and beautiful, although, slightly uncomfortable at all the attention. Frederik, boyishly handsome and happy, was chatting away to everyone, being familiar with attention. They looked so in love.
We slowly became "merry" whilst sipping beautiful Tasmanian wine, chatting and watching from a mezzanine level with a good view of the proceedings, including Charlotte Sparre showing her fairytale inspired haute couture dress collection.
As the evening came to an end that weird hushed silence returned. We both turned around and saw the royal couple approaching the rear door and......us. We stretched out our hands as they walked past and Frederik and Mary looked us straight in the eyes and shook hands, saying...... "goodnight, thank you for a lovely evening".
It was such a thrill to have a close encounter with the future King and Queen of Denmark and I felt so proud of my Danish heritage and the special bond between Denmark and Australia.
I will remember that magical evening for the rest of my life. Thanks Dad!