Queen Elizabeth‘s 90th birthday is in a few weeks but this past Sunday, a documentary celebrating her milestone birthday aired in the U.K. and featured all kinds of royals paying tribute to the long-standing monarch. Prince Charles, Prince Harry, Prince William, Princess Eugenie and the Countess of Wessex are just some of the royals who took part in the TV special but it’s Duchess Kate who is getting all the attention.
Perhaps it’s because it’s Kate’s first solo interview and people want to see how she is on her own. Or maybe we’ve heard some earlier fun tidbits from Kate and wanted to hear more.
We already know what George calls his great-grandmum and that Kate gifted the Queen with some homemade chutney for her first Christmas with her in-laws. That’s gold! So what other awesome details would the Duchess drop? Well, about herself, Kate said that everyone in the family teases her because when it comes to her appearances, she spends “far too long chatting.” And just like her royal duties, she was equally chatty in the interview.
Kate spilled that while she and Will have a long way to go, she wants them to be just like Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip. Because who wouldn’t?
“All the time William and I are so struck by the Queen’s sense of duty and commitment,” gushed Kate, via Hello!. “And I think to do that by yourself would be a very lonely place to be. But I think to have the support of your husband there by your side on those occasions — and behind closed doors as well — I think is really special.”
Kate adds, laughing, “William and I have got quite a long way to go. But, no, it really, really is fantastic. And to have seen and experienced as much as they have together, it’s really special.”
Elizabeth’s feelings for Philip began in 1939 when she was just 13, and seven years later he asked King George VI for his daughter’s hand in marriage. They were married on Nov. 20, 1947, marking this year their 69th as man and wife. So those are some gigantic footsteps for William and Kate to follow.
With a happy, 70-plus-year relationship still in progress, it’s no wonder the Queen is smiling. And it’s that feature that Kate adores. “I think she’s so, so engaging,” said Kate. “I think she has got the most fantastic smile and I think if the Queen does nothing but smiles, it gives people a huge amount of joy and a huge amount of pleasure.
“She’s so dignified and calm … everyone feels that they’ve had some quality time with Her Majesty — and also a real personal connection, and I think that’s a real skill.”
And it turns out Kate is just like the rest of us — in awe of the Queen’s seemingly boundless energy.
“I have no idea where she gets her energy from — I need to go and ask a few more questions,” laughs Kate. “Being a mother and new in my job as well, I have no idea how the Queen has done it — with four children of her own. To manage all of those elements of your life — from the family, to the work as well as to the national importance of her role — it’s extraordinary. And for so long too — I think it’s really incredible.”
Kate speaks for all of us. How DOES she do it? Not to knock Kate but the Queen is a tough act to follow. Her marriage to Will might be happy and perfect but if she wants it to bear even the slightest resemblance to that of Elizabeth and Philip’s, they’ve got a long way to go. But if anyone can do it, they can — so long as they buckle down, put the time in and do the work. On all fronts.