Last week I had to go to Philadelphia. Twice. For two separate conferences.
Ok. I was cheap. I had a ride up and back on Thursday and I didn't want to pay for a hotel room until my Saturday conference.
I decided that after a couple of intense weeks of research, writing, powerpoint making, and all that other stuff, I deserved a slight detour after my second presentation: the Diana exhibit at the National Constitution Center.Judge me all you want. I admit: Diana was my princess. I am a Diana-lover. My grandparents lived in London when she got married and send us news clippings and books and postcards. When I was on study abroad in London, I lived around the corner from Kensington Palace, and everytime our class was interrupted by the sound of her helicopter flying in or out, we wondered what activity was happening.
I loved her dresses. I loved that it took a while for her to find her style, but boy did she find it. I loved that she supported British fashion designers and I loved her sense of class.
I loved her emphasis on humanitarian aid. I loved that she used her station in life to do an incredible amount of good. She didn't shirk away from the difficult situations that were so far removed from her own palaces and royal activity. She jumped in.
Most of all, I loved that she loved people. She touched sick people and held people with crazy diseases. She wasn't afraid of the royal imprimature being polluted in any way. She was brave and fierce.
She obviously struggled privately. And yet she had a grace and a poise that stood strong despite her difficulties.
I remember exactly where I was when I found out about her death. At first I was convinced it was a conspiracy plot by the queen because Diana had stolen her spot light and because of all the troubles with Charles. I watched her funeral and I bought the Elton John cd in support of her, and I listened to it over and over. She was my princess.
The exhibit, by the way, was delightful. If you get the chance, wherever it travels, you should go. I LOVED seeing the dresses I had seen in pictures. The train on that dress? 25 feet long. Incredible. And well worth the $36 parking ticket for being three minutes late to my meter. Take that, Philadelphia. You can't ruin my Diana experience.
And I think I'm going to go to London this year for Christmas. Or to do humanitarian aid somewhere. Is anyone in?