Every morning, as I stumble into the kitchen looking like a wretched witch, with my wild hair and fuzzy bathrobe, Queen Elizabeth greets me. This is a true story.
Her Majesty stands before me in poised perfection, in her pink coat and hat ensemble, wearing a pearl necklace,with a purse tucked into the elbow of her right arm. Her severe smile casts no judgements, just pleasantries. She waves at me with her delicate white-gloved hand, using the trademark royal wave, that gentle motion of a subtle twist from her wrist.
I do not curtsy. It would only lead to some sort of embarrassing exposure of what lies beneath my fuzzy housecoat. I doubt the Queen wears Betty Boop pajamas, but then again, you never know. Instead, return her smile. Well, actually, it’s more of a grimace, because every morning I mutter to myself that nobody ever cleans out the (insert your own expletive here) coffee pot.
I try not to push the Queen aside as I open the kitchen window for fresh air. Imagine if I knocked Her Majesty into the sink of dishes we didn’t wash the night before. Kerplunk.
The Queen only waves in the morning to mid-afternoon, when the sun is up or the daylight is bright enough to ignite the solar panel on the back of her plastic head. She sits on the windowsill next to the pottery dish my daughter made me in grade three, which now holds several push pins, an elastic, a tiny bouncy ball and some coins, featuring cameos of the Queen herself. I cannot explain to you why this my miniature waving Queen Elizabeth doll makes me so happy; she just does.
Perhaps it was because I first discovered her in a quirky shop in the quaint village of Annapolis Royal, Nova Scotia. There she stood in a stack of different outfitted replicas, all waving in unison, ignited by the energy of the shop lights, wrapped up in a clear plastic box. I had never seen anything so bizarre. I loved her so much, I bought two.
My Queen Elizabeth sits in my kitchen window while her twin sits in the windowsill of my dearest childhood friend, whose view overlooks the Bay of Fundy. Every day, in our independent homes, lives and careers we are both united by the simple fact that, en route to our essential life-giving coffee pot, we are each greeted by Her Majesty.
My friend and I feel that our waving Queen Elizabeth has forgiven us for our obnoxious appreciation of the Sex Pistols and their raucous “God Save the Queen” lyrics. We all need to rebel sometime. Surely, she understands that.
I like to think that my Nana Waterhouse, raised in England, would love my tribute to our Queen and would see the joy and humour in it. My Grandfather Waterhouse absolutely would not. He was a monarchist through and through. In fact, he bought the first television on the street in his Toronto neighbourhood just to watch the real Queen Elizabeth’s coronation. He would never put a waving statue of her in a window. He was no fun. Nana would surely giggle.
Like me she would know that Queen Elizabeth, in this her Diamond Jubilee, is a tribute to girl power, in all its complicated glory, including a lifetime of being surrounded by men who have no sense of humour, (giggle).
Long live the Queen.
Writing has been my passion since I learned how to hold a pencil (which I still cannot do properly). Despite my father’s insistence that I would starve to death in this career, I remain well fed and eager to write more. They say you should do what you love: I love to write.