Thursday, August 16, 2007

our brush with royalty

as i was writing that last post, i realized that i never wrote about our meeting sarah ferguson, the duchess of york. this happened nov 11, 2006:

pooka was in the hospital for a fever of undetermined origin. just before 9 one morning, two child-life specialists came in and asked if pooka would like to attend an event with crafts and story time. simultaneously, one lady said "vip guest" and the other said "royal guest". hmmmm.... (i was thinking who that could be. i hoped for wills, but i figured either fergie or someone so far down the line as to be unknown, at least in the states.) pooka said sure, so i asked when this was happening and the first lady said, "in a bout 5 minutes." yikes!

it was a good thing i had already combed my hair and brushed my teeth, but otherwise we were still in our jammies. i threw some socks, shoes, and a mask on pooka and we hustled down the hall, dragging the iv pole behind.

the auditorium was set up for a press conference, with a table at the front for the kids to have breakfast, do puzzles, and play tea party. it was quite apparent that everyone else was well prepared to attend this event. that is to say, we were the only ones in pajamas.

shortly after we settled in, a bustle at the door revealed that our guest had arrived and it was, indeed, fergie. she made her way along the table, taking time to speak with each child individually and handing out small treats.

there was some yakkety-yakkety, by which i found out that this event was in honor of world children's day sponsored by ronald mcdonald house charities. (we have never stayed there, but they do offer excellent assistance to families of sick kids.)

after more yakkety-yakety from a couple more people, fergie read to the kids from one of her books. after the story, fergie and the children made individual hand casts. at one point, pooka and the duchess wwere 'trapped' in their cast s right next to each other. many photos were taken, but none by me because, hello!, i don't take my camera to the hospital. moreover, as i found out later, the duchess' image is very protected and i would not have been allowed to anyway. the director of ronald mcdonald charities declared pooka and fergie 'the shot' of the event and even captured them on his personal camera phone! there was a news crew there, as well, and the event showed up on the evening news that day. during the approximate 3 minute piece, either pooka or i, or both, were on screen 5 times, including a closeup of us in our jammies.

pooka had a great time, even though she had no clue who this redhead was. if i had been forewarned, i could have explained how she was a real life princess (ok, i know that's not technically correct, but close enough)--then pooka would have been out of her mind, cuz you know, princessess are THE shit to 5 year old girls. at any rate, we got an autographed copy of the book to keep, so one day she will look back and realize how special this day really was.

later, i contacted ronald mcdonald charities to try and get copies of some of the pictures that were taken. it took a while to get approval back from the duchess' 'people,' but they finally let me have some digital files with the understanding that they wouldn't find their (photoshopped) way to the internet. no prob, these are for my scrapbook.