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4 Surprising ways Queen Elizabeth II was like all of us

królowa Elżbieta II i książę Filip

PA/Press Association/East News

Królowa Elżbieta II i książę Filip w posiadłości Balmoral. Zdjęcie wykonane 1 września 1972 r. z okazji 25. rocznicy ich ślubu.

Cerith Gardiner - published on 09/26/22

Along with her love of a good giggle and a stroll in the countryside, the late monarch was relatable in a number of ways.

In the wake of her death, there has been much in the news about the late British sovereign’s reign. Yet, among all the impressive roles she had, there was a woman who was down-to-earth and took pleasure in the simple things in life.

Like many, she had a deep love for her four-legged friends and the great outdoors, but there are other things she enjoyed doing that we can also relate to in our own lives.

She had an American pen pal

Not many of us have pen pals these days, but Elizabeth II had one for 70 years. The monarch received a letter on her birthday in 1953 from Adele Hankey in North Dakota. The two were born on the same day, in the same year. The Queen replied, and the pair continued this annual catch up right up until Elizabeth’s final birthday.

Hankey, now 96, shared that the two had a love of cooking: “The recipes the Queen liked were with marmalade. And so do I. How about that?”

While the two never met, their 70-year correspondence isn’t negligible. When asked by KFYR if she’d miss the Queen, the nonagenarian shared: “Oh, absolutely. You miss your pen pals.”

She loved a pocket!

In most photos of the Queen, if she wasn’t enjoying herself at the racecourse, you’ll see her in a staged pose. However, she did have a dream to sit for a photo in a very particular way that the palace and her mother had disapproved of for years.

In fact, the Queen wanted to pose informally with her hands in her pockets. (And you can’t beat a dress with pockets!) The resulting photo was slightly informal, but her joy at being more of a casual Queen was palpable.

She enjoyed washing up

Well, not that many of us enjoy this chore, but for the Queen this was her yearly check-in with normality. When she was in her beloved Balmoral over the summer, she would slip off her usual white cloth gloves, and put on some suitable for washing up. She would insist on doing the washing up, and a lady-in-waiting, or even a guest, would do the drying.

She was a “simple Christian soul”

If you caught a glimpse of the funeral, you’ll have seen the sheer majesty of the occasion. On the top of her coffin were placed a number of impressive objects, such as the Royal Standard flag that aligned the sovereign to her people. Whenever and wherever she was at home, the flag would fly above the building. If she was not, it was replaced with the regular Union Jack.

It was also impossible to miss the dazzling Imperial State Crown, the orb that represents a sovereign’s God-given power, and the scepter that represents the Crown’s power and has been used in coronations since 1661.

And among all the regalia was a bouquet of carefully picked flowers, including some myrtle grown from a sprig that was in her wedding bouquet over seven decades ago.

Yet during the incredibly moving committal ceremony the regalia was stripped from her coffin. As it descended into the royal vault, we were reminded that she was a family woman and she would take this final journey to her Heavenly Father as a “simple Christian soul.”

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