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My memory of Diana, Princess of Wales (Keywords: dich thuat)
I come from an Asian country where people don’t pay much attention to European royals or monarchies around the world. Instead, daily issues such as prices of necessities, what to cook for meals, how to make more money for families, where to buy cheap and beautiful clothes, etc. are usually the talk of the town. Yet I find myself being drawn towards the life and work of this particular figure, the lady who was called “the most photographed woman in the world”, the People’s Princess.

                                   

1990: I came across an old daily in my family’s newspaper rack where there was a picture of the princess receiving flowers from well-wishers. My first thought was “Who is this lady? What a regal woman !”. The caption answered my question: she is Diana, a princess of Great Britain. I was so busy with piles of homework that I didn’t even read the headline of that article. Still, the picture was something very special to me.

1992: While tidying up the house, I saw another picture of Diana. This time she was greeting an old lady who was in nun’s uniform. Both ladies showed great respect for each other. The princess held her two hands and slightly lowered her head while the old lady also made a slight bow. The caption read: princess Diana met Mother Teresa outside a nursing home set up by the nun.

1996: My pastime was reading, so I usually read a lot when I had time. Then, I accidentally saw Diana again in an article about her marriage with Prince Charles. I told myself: “They are wealthy and have a very high social status, and they are still in much trouble. She must be very unhappy. Poor her !”

1st September 1997: I was playing with my classmates when someone came and told us the breaking news: princess Diana died in a car crash in Paris. I stopped chatting with the schoolgirls and a sense of loss struck me. That elegant and nice lady had gone ? Then, I no longer had a chance to see her in newspapers again? I wouldn’t be able to read about her like I did?

Then, graduation exams and personal affairs kept flowing into my life, and I gradually forgot stories of the princess. It seemed that I was too absorbed in my study to take interests in anything else in life.

2010: My colleagues all went out to meet business partners, and I was staying alone in my office. While surfing the Web, I ran into a website about royal jewelry and all of a sudden saw the princess in pictures. It was just like seeing an old friend again after many years of separation. I then found ways to learn more about the princess, her style, the stories behind her jewels, her two handsome children, and most remarkably, her charity work. She is a true princess, I think.

2011: It was weekend. It was raining so heavily outside, so I decided not to go out. In my cozy bedroom, I started surfing the Web to get some news as well as information about Diana. In the middle of my searching, the video clip about her historic interview on BBC’s Panorama in 1995 appeared on the screen. I spent the whole afternoon listening to and watching the talk between the princess and Martin Bashir. Her life, her much troubled marriage, her agony after knowing and witnessing her husband’s infidelity, her physical and mental sufferings time after time, the driving force of her charity work, etc. touched the most inner part of my soul. Now I came to know the reason why the world mourned for her leaving on that fateful day of August 1997.

I eventually understand the dear title “People’s Princess” that people gave her. I didn’t meet her in person, nor did I talk to her. I didn’t even live in her country. But, from her, there is a source of encouragement, bravery, and common touch that always seems to radiate and reach people from all walks of life from all nations.

She is and will be an eternal icon of royalty, dignity and humanity.




Teresa

_________

Keywords: dich thuat