The Broad is Back!

June 19, 2010

Princess Bride

Filed under: New Broads,Sweden — by maggiec @ 4:09 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

Today Princess Victoria of Sweden married her long time boyfriend Daniel Westling.  I wish them long and happy.  Of course, I went to the website of Sweden’s biggest tabloid, Aftonbladet to look at the pictures–I have a soft spot for brides.  She looked lovely and radiantly happy, and it did my curmudgeonly old heart a world of good to see them.  And really, I’m not royalist, but royal families are pretty good at fabulous weddings, and if I am going to look at wedding pictures, I do so enjoy fabulous.

The royal wedding isn’t making much of a splash here in the US.  When I checked the NY Times, there was nothing, but then on Huffington Post I read that major news agencies refused to cover it because of what they termed “unfair restrictions” by Swedish national television. But I don’t think many people in the US care. I don’t think many know there is a king of Sweden much less a crown princess.  The  Twitterverse is hopping, and someone is tweeting the entire thing. No, I didn’t read it.  Just looked for research purposes.

But looking at the wedding pictures was bittersweet.  I occasionally miss Sweden, and today of all days it was looking its best.  Stockholm is an incredibly beautiful city, the Venice of the North, and those who showed up to watch the festivities were all ready to celebrate. And come summer, Swedes just love to celebrate!  This time of year the sun keeps going on 11 PM in Stockholm in the form of a lingering dusk.  You really should see it someday.  After the incredibly long nights of winter, this is the reward.  So I know I’m missing a good party.  Even though my Swedish husband is a staunch republican, he’s never said no to a good party.  And I suspect he harbors a soft spot for the princess.  She’s sweet and pretty and hasn’t actively done anything boneheaded in public to embarrass the country, unlike another Swedish royal I could name, but I won’t since it’s his daughter’s wedding day and all that.

But yes, I miss Sweden some days. I coincidentally looked at my passport today, and I still have my resident permit, so theoretically I could go back.  I could even get a job at my old university.  Some days it is incredibly tempting, but I know I won’t.  Too many things are still keeping me here in the US, and besides, the Swedish summer is fleeting.  All too soon it would be dark and cold, and I would be cursing my fate.

I just wanted to blog today since I’m feeling more Swedish than usual.  The opposite of that is that I’m feeling much more foreign today. Of course, my usual feeling of being Swedish is not at all, but I spent five years there thinking I’d be there for much much longer. I wanted to commemorate the day for Victoria as I never thought she’d see it.  Although she’s dated Daniel for eight years, he is a gym owner and her former personal trainer.  Not exactly prince material, though today he became Prince Daniel, Duke of Vastergotland, so fair play to you, Daniel.  You made it.

The face of monarchy is certainly changing.  And I was surprised at all the royalty I knew–watching the slideshow of pictures I could recognize most of the Scandinavian royalty as well as the English, Spanish, Dutch and Jordanian.  The only one I really care about is Queen Rania of Jordan, who is a powerhouse activist for things I deeply care about and blogs about her causes.  The royals are familiar to me because I learned a lot of Swedish reading the tabloids while I was working at our video shop.  We sold the papers, so I would read them to learn.  Since just like here, tabloids are written at about a third or fourth grade level, it was perfect for me.  Plus there were lots of pictures, and the royals of Europe would often make the pages.  And coincidentally, while I was living in Europe a lot of crown princes and princesses got married.

As with any wedding, I cooed over the bride and groom.  I did like her dress very much–very Swedish, I thought, modern Swedish design that is clean and classic–and she really did look amazingly happy.  So did Daniel. Her family looked happy as well.  There was only one picture in which her younger sister looked quite melancholy, but poor Madeleine’s own engagement broke up in April when her fiance cheated on her, and the other woman sold her story to the press.  Princess Madeleine is almost always “on,” so I was surprised at my reaction to the picture.  I felt sorry for her, but then I’d feel sorry for any woman in the same position, really.

I also made fun of some of the outfits.  Royalty can wear the most gawd-awful gowns!  Most of the men looked like toy soldiers with ribbons and medals and such, but some of the queens and princesses looked like they were wearing upholstery.

I felt a little silly wanting to write about this today, but with all the hate, anger and evil dominating the world’s attention now, sometimes it’s nice to focus on love, hope and promise. I will now go back to ignoring the Swedish royal family, something very easy to do, until the first royal baby.  Weddings make us think of babies, of course, and part of Victoria’s job description is providing an heir.  So I’m guessing right around this time next year, I’ll have another column talking about missing Sweden.

Grattis på bröllopsdagen, Victoria och Daniel!  Lycka till!


  1. I saw it briefly on CNN. It looked nice!

    I’m personally glad you live closer now! But I hear what you’re saying.

    Comment by Emily — June 19, 2010 @ 4:34 pm |Reply

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  4. […] Princess Victoria of Sweden’s wedding barely made a splash over here. And she’s just as pretty as Catherine. And she’s next in line to the throne, not third like William. Why do Americans worship the Windsors? We certainly don’t understand the least thing about royalty. I was looking at People Magazine’s coverage of the wedding (pictures!), and was struck at how many nuances of royalty the reporters seem to miss. OK, and I was struck at how much I actually know.  But why the madness?  […]

    Pingback by Best Wishes, but I am so glad it’s over! « The Broad is Back! — April 29, 2011 @ 2:30 pm |Reply

  5. […] having seen the woman in the flesh, I was curious about her wedding.  Three years ago, her sister, Crown Princess Victoria, got married. I was curious then, as well, so I checked out the Swedish websites that day and was truly happy […]

    Pingback by Grattis Madeleine och Chris | The Broad is Back! — June 8, 2013 @ 12:13 pm |Reply

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