What’s on this week: Monday 1 – Friday 5, March

Holly O'Neill

Whip up some of your own Ballymaloe brown bread this week


Join our virtual health, beauty & wellness event with Jennifer Rock and Aimee Connolly


Wonder Women take magnesium: Here’s why the mineral is a miracle for menopause

Helen Seymour

All the best looks from the 2021 Golden Globes

Lauren Heskin

Why the 2021 Golden Globes are being overshadowed by controversy

Jennifer McShane

3 rural homes in Co Cork on sale for €175,000 and under

Megan Burns

Interracial dating: “People kept asking ‘where is she from?'”

Filomena Kaguako

GALLERY: Beautiful gowns from The Golden Globes through the years

Jennifer McShane

Image / Editorial

7 thoughts I had while following Prince William and Kate Middleton around Ireland for 2 days

by Grace McGettigan
05th Mar 2020

I spent the past two days following Prince William and Kate Middleton around Ireland – here are my thoughts

As a journalist, every workday is different. You never know who you’re going to meet, what story might break or which feature might arise at any given moment. This week was even more unusual. On Tuesday and Wednesday, I followed Prince William and Kate Middleton around as they embarked on their first official tour of Ireland.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, who landed on a private Aer Lingus flight before being whisked off in a Range Rover, met with a variety of government officials and people from the community. They have visited places of significant cultural importance, as well as charities playing a vital role in society. To my delight, I got to experience it all. Here are seven thoughts I had while covering the visit:

1. Garda escorts are very exciting. As one of the journalists covering the royal tour, I went along to numerous engagements on a special media-only bus. An array of Garda cars and motorbikes (sirens ringing, of course) ensured we didn’t have to stop in traffic jams or at red lights. It was thrilling (plus it was entertaining to see confused pedestrians staring as we sped by). In the excitement, I only felt slightly bad for other motorists who were held up in the commotion.

2. Kate Middleton (in real life) comes across as someone I’d very much like to be friends with. The mother-of-three seems natural and down-to-earth, someone with a fun sense of humour and a warm heart. One stand-out moment was on the steps of government buildings when she and Prince William met with Leo Varadkar and his partner Matthew Barrett. When Leo suggested the foursome wave to the crowd, Kate did an awkward wave (in a fun, quirky way) before roaring with laughter at the forcedness of it all. She came across incredibly normal – someone I’d like to have tea and biscuits with.

3. I am freezing. Following the royal family around involves a lot of standing still in icy weather; waiting patiently for the pair to arrive from wherever their previous engagement may have been. For security reasons, journalists and photographers are kept in one place (outside) with no space to move around to warm up. Besides, nobody wants to move anyway (maintaining your vantage point is essential for getting good photos). I haven’t felt my toes since Tuesday.

4. I feel a bit guilty. After the excitement of day one, reality and guilt started to set in on day two. I’m a bit uncomfortable intruding on two people’s lives as they go about a day’s work. While I know they’re used to it (at least, I hope they are), I do feel bad for invading their privacy and taking photos of their every move. I know I’d hate it if it were the other way around.

5. Not all media folk feel guilty, however. Some of the reporters and photographers I met over the past two days follow the royal family as a career. To pay the bills, they have to get the perfect shot, and so they are willing to stand on chairs and lean over competitors if necessary. Life of the paparazzi, eh?

6. I wonder does Kate Middleton have any involvement in her wardrobe choices? Or are her outfits selected for her? The Duchess of Cambridge always manages to be perfectly dressed for every occasion (wearing a green coat on arrival at Dublin airport, and a khaki Dubarry coat for a visit to Teagasc). I’d love to know if she’s styling herself or if there’s a hired stylist calling the shots.

7. The PR team from the Department of Foreign Affairs is exceptional. Not only did they organise the entire visit and media coverage, but their attention to detail and willingness to go the extra mile for the press was second-to-none. When my phone and power bank cut-out simultaneously, they made a huge effort to ensure I had somewhere to charge up. Above all, they were warm and friendly (which made standing about in the cold a lot more bearable).

Photo: Julien Behal Photography

Read more: Kate Middleton has worn a dress by one of our favourite brands during her trip to Ireland

Read more: Why this Irish mental health charity was an essential stop for Kate Middleton

Read more: Bród steals the show as Prince William and Kate Middleton visit Áras an Uachtaráin

Also Read

5 simple ways to help you budget in the run up to Christmas

This year, in particular, we are feeling the strain of...

By Jennifer McShane

deal with grief
6 books, plays and podcasts to help you deal with grief

Death is a natural part of life, yet there’s no...

By Grace McGettigan

Why are we so afraid of answering our phone?

There is not a soul on this earth who likes...

By Grace McGettigan

8 quirky-yet-perfect Christmas gifts for the Netflix addict in your life

While the dawn of the Netflix era has been great...

By Jennifer McShane

9 beautiful Champagne glasses to order in time for NYE

Ring in the New Year (and bid a welcome adieu...

By Lauren Heskin

Cosmetic injectables: ‘It takes a brave and honourable clinic to tell someone ‘you don’t need this”

 Less may be more when it comes to cosmetic enhancements,...

By Amanda Cassidy

Aoibheann MacNamara
Inside a house conversion brimming with Scandi-Galwegian chic

Artistic dynamo Aoibheann MacNamara has loved every moment she’s spent...

By IMAGE Interiors & Living

Danish interiors
7 highstreet Danish interiors brands to start shopping from now

Like Danish interiors but not sure where to begin shopping?...

By Megan Burns