When you think of royalty, a few things come immediately to mind: bejeweled crowns, pomp and circumstance, and servants to manage your every whim.
Prince Charles alone has more than 140 attendants, who do everything from security work to driving his car to serving his tea (because a prince must never serve his own tea!). The total count for the entire royal family runs upwards of 500 employees!
It would seem that they do nothing without the aid of servants, but not so for Prince William and his fiancé, Kate Middleton. The young couple has announced that they will oh-so-courageously continue their life as they live now, with no personal valets, butlers, or maids.
Oh, but don't worry -- they won't be entirely on their own. There will still be a security force attending them at their farmhouse. They supposedly plan on doing all of their own cooking, cleaning, and shopping. In other words, they deign to lower themselves to the level of all us commoners. How brave!
Why do this, when they could have servants to attend their every whim?
Some say it has to do with how Diana died and William's feelings about the intrusive nature of a large staff. They want to minimize their exposure to the media, keeping gossip out of the media. Did William forget that he's a public figure and symbol of the British government?
Others say that William, as a member of the Royal Air Force, wishes to maintain the same standard of living as other officers. Since when do RAF officers live in multimillion-dollar farmhouses? Talk about a disconnect!
We could be seeing the beginning of the modernization of the royals. What remains to be seen is what happens once the military days are over and life at Buckingham Palace begins ...
What do you think of the decision to go without servants? Is it a bold step forward for the monarchy or a strange attempt to seem like one of the "people"?
Image via Huffington Post