It is 1980 and we have gone to a London theatre to see The Mousetrap along with a house guest from Toledo in Ohio.
As we near the theatre we see there are policemen everywhere - why we ask one of them. "The Queen Mother is going to see The Mousetrap as part of her 80th birthday celebrations". How exciting, I had not see the Queen Mother since I was a child.
As usual the royal party arrived after everyone was seated and just before the curtain rose. The evening passed as we enjoyed the play but just before the end I began to figure out how I could get to see the Queen Mother when I knew she would leave the theatre before everyone else. I decided to leave a few minutes before the end to get outside in order to see her leave.
I found myself in a labrynth of corridors and eventually found my way to a side exit. Without thinking I pushed open the door (this was in the days before all the high security that we know today) and to my surprise and shock I was faced with a mob of people who were waiting outside and obviously knew that this was the exit the Queen Mother would be using. What could I do? I just stood in front of them trying to ignore the various comments coming my way!
Within a few minutes the Queen Mother appeared and standing about 3 feet away from me stood and acknowledged us all with her engaging smile and wave. The only camera that evening was the one belonging to our USA friend who was still somewhere in the theatre with Alan. Shame!
Today I would never have the chance to be in that position and if I did would probably be carted off as a terrorist.