Here is a typical weekday morning for Queen Elizabeth II while in residence at Buckingham Palace in London:
7:30 The maid enters her bedroom with a tray of morning tea: 2 silver pots of Earl Grey, milk, and a few biscuits. The cup and saucer are bone china. The linen napkin bears the royal cypher “EIIR” (Elizabeth II Regent). The maid sets down the tray on a bedside table and crosses the room to open the bedroom curtains. She then turns on the radio which is tuned to BBC Radio 4′s Today programme. The Queen listens to the day’s news as she sips her tea. Outside her window the traffic on Constitution Hill is building and people are strolling through Green Park. The maid draws a bath.
While the Queen is bathing, the maid lays out the first of perhaps many outfits the Queen will wear that day, depending upon the royal schedule. Once the Queen is dressed, the Queen’s hairdresser styles her hair.
8:30 The Queen joins her husband Prince Philip for breakfast which is served in the first floor dining room that overlooks the Palace garden. Prince Philip has had a shower and coffee. During their breakfast together, the Prince may place little morsels of food on the bird feeder outside the window. A tailcoated footman brings the breakfast – wholewheat toast with marmalade and more tea and coffee. The Queen reads her papers: The Daily Telegraph and The Racing Post.
9:00 The Piper to the Sovereign - referred to as the “Queen’s Piper” – steps into the Palace garden. He is wearing a kilt of Royal Stewart tartan and two eagle feathers in his headwear. The Queen and Prince Philip listen as he tunes his bagpipes. For the next fifteen minutes, the Queen’s Piper plays a selection of bagpipe tunes below the dining room window.
9:30 The Queen is seated at her Chippendale desk in her office to begin reviewing her correspondence. A footman comes in with her corgis, who have just had their morning walk in the garden. She works all morning. After lunch, she may take the dogs for a walk herself.
Above, a 1994 People magazine photograph shows Queen Elizabeth II at Balmoral, her Scottish Highland hideaway she retreats to every August. Whether at Balmoral, Windsor Castle, or Buckingham Palace, the Queen’s weekdays start with a fifteen-minute bagpipe serenade at 9 a.m. When at Balmoral, though, the pipers wear the Balmoral tartan.
For more on Queen Elizabeth II, look in the left column “Categories-People-Queen Elizabeth II.” I’ve written many posts on the Queen; I hope you enjoy them!
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