It was August 30th, a Saturday night, and I was in a crowded karaoke bar, kicking back, when one of the televisions at the back of the room showed an awful car crash and a news crawl. People started to gather, and some of us drifted back there through the smoky haze.
It was news footage of an underpass in Paris, about four or so in the morning their time, August 31st, and in the glare of photographers’ lights was the crumpled wreckage of a black Mercedes limousine. “The princess… the Princess of Wales… Diana… pronounced dead…”; that was the buzz in the crowd, but we couldn’t believe it, and couldn’t take it in. In the middle of another fun evening, music blaring in the background and karaoke words crawling across the big screen TV at the front, this awful tragic terrible news spread through the good time crowd, and the beer buzz faded.
In the days that followed I, like millions of Canadians, watched the coverage and wept mostly for the poor boys, her sons, and their loss… a mother they loved and who, despite what many saw as her faults of temperament and judgment, was an anchor to real life in a world where they were feted and adored, but not understood or loved for themselves.
Ten years. I know she’d be proud of them today.