The fairytale wedding was close at hand. She went early to bed on the evening before her wedding, and astonishingly she managed, in the Queen Mother's house, to soon fall a sleep. Her engagement ring, a £30,000 sapphire ring with 14 diamonds, lay on her bedside table. How would her new life as the Princess of Wales look? Had she made the right decision? Would she be able to bear being constantly under public scrutiny? But for such doubts it was now too late. Early in the morning Diana took a hot bubble bath. Tea and toast with orange marmalade was brought to her room, but she sipped just a little tea. Her heart was pounding! Could not everyone in England hear it? She was overwhelmed by the sight of the celebrating crowds who had already been assembling for days beforehand. Diana's favourite make-up artist came to Clarence House with a large suitcase full of make-up, powder and rouge.
She applied just a little colour on Lady Di's face, but a great amount of waterproof mascara. Diana should appear fresh and innocent when she appeared at the altar. Then David and Elizabeth Emanuel, the designers of the wedding dress appeared, and helped Diana to get dressed. It was a magnificent gown made from ivory silk with an almost eight metres long veil. The narrow bodice was set with valuable lace, the sleeves opulently gathered up and embellished with little ribbons. It cost £9,000.
Unfortunately the dress designers had not made allowances for the lack of space in the glass coach that should bring Diana and her father to St. Paul's Cathedral. When the bride alighted from the coach the dress was crumpled and full of creases. Yet this circumstance did no damage to the beauty and grace of the bride. Diana appeared to all the observers like a figure from a fairytale. AlreadyCharles, in the gala-uniform of the marines, waited with the Royal Family and all the guests in the cathedral. Diana's mother Frances and her grandmother Lady Ruth Fermoy were allowed to take places very close to the Royal Family, whilst step-mother Lady Raine and Frances' new husband had to make do with the pews behind. Over 700 million people from 58 countries followed on the television how the bride with her father walked down the aisle towards the altar. The Earl of Spencer had tears in his eyes, for it was not only a great day in the life of his daughter, but also in his! He hobbled a little, however this did not detract from him showing true royal dignity and pride.
The solemn ceremony ran not without a few slips. By her acceptance Diana changed the order of Charles' forenames, calling him Phillip Charles Arthur George which led Prince Charles to the joke:"Diana, you have actually married my father". The heir also made a mishap. He declared: "I will share all ’your" goods with you". Obviously he should have promised to have shared ’his" earthly goods. In addition he placed the wedding ring on the left hand. But the worst thing that happened to Charles was the fact that after the vows he forgot to kiss Diana. Was that a bad omen? The celebration of marriage in St. Paul's Cathedral, led by the Archbishop of Canterbury, lasted almost an hour and a half. The following coach ride to the palace, the celebrating crowds, the well practised, but still so strange, waving, Diana completed as though in a trance. How did the 20 year-old really feel and think in these moments? She appeared so relaxed, calm and overjoyed. The pressure on her spirit had been removed. Now she had actually managed it.
Yes, Lady Diana Spencer was the rightful wedded wife of the future king of England! She enjoyed being bathed in the crowds, the deafening celebrations when she received a kiss from Charles while on the balcony of the royal palace. In these unforgettable moments Diana felt herself chosen by God and the world:
I am a princess and will one day become queen of England. HURRAH
The dream pair spent the first night at Broadlands, where Charles' parents had once spent their wedding night. The freshly married pair spent the honeymoon on the royal yacht Britannia. A Mediterranean cruise was on the programme, a gift from the queen. Charles and Diana were, however, not alone and undisturbed. As, naturally, a staff of servants was with them. But not only that. Charles used the free time to read science books and also brought his old fishing equipment with him. What a disappointment for Diana! She dreamt of watching romantic sunsets from the deck, with their arms tightly around each other, wanted to breakfast in bed with him, to dance under a glimmering, starry sky. Queen Elizabeth thought more practically, and built official appointments into the programme: if the pair were already visiting Tunisia, Sardinia, Greece and Egypt, then a few official visits would not harm... The cruise lasted for eleven days, which Diana, in spite of everything, greatly enjoyed.
Finally they sailed for Scotland. The queen and her husband Prince Philip were already waiting for the dream couple. Diana and Charles were meant to pass the rest of their honeymoon in the company of the Royal Family. How wonderfully romantic! The heir to the throne did not notice his young wife's disappointment. There could not be anything more enjoyable for him than long hacks, walks and hunts. Diana didn't dare to complain. Before the wedding everyone advised her to be obedient. She was also advised, directly from her father, that to be allowed to marry in to the royal family would mean that she would have to prove her worth. She wanted that, but could she imagine that everything would run with so much difficulty, and with so much formality?