Royal baby watch goes on… and on

Royal fans sit outside St Mary's Hospital opposite the Lindo wing in anticipation of the birth of Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge's, first baby in central London, July 16, 2013.  Credit: Reuters
Royal fans sit outside St Mary’s Hospital opposite the Lindo wing in anticipation of the birth of Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge’s, first baby in central London, July 16, 2013.
Credit: Reuters

Cameras poised, pavement territories marked, and step ladders erected, the Lindo wing – of the appointed Royal birthplace at London’s St. Mary’s hospital – lies under press siege.

For the film crews and cameramen staking out the hospital, it’s like waiting in cozy but dull media trenches. Freelance cameraman Nasser Itani has been waiting for the arrival of the Duchess of Cambridge for twelve days working eight-hour shifts. “The highest point came yesterday when there were rumors that Kate had left her family home in Bucklebury for London – but it was fake [laughs].”

The press teams keep boredom at bay by chatting amongst themselves, reading and tallying off the days like Steve McQueen in “The Great Escape”. The ‘Great Kate Wait’ has almost reached a fortnight and Itani and his media peers are waiting for what he calls “the golden thirty seconds” when Catherine and William will stand before the press with their newborn child.

However, a posed picture with their baby would go against Royal protocol (explained below). And it’s unlikely that the future monarch will be held aloft before their subjects in Simba-style in “The Lion King” or dangled from a window in a Michael Jackson fashion.

But ‘superfan’ John Loughrey, who pitched his tent last Monday, shares the sentiment that the new parents will embrace the historic moment with their legions of global admirers. “They’ll definitely address the crowd and people will shake baby rattles and toys and teddy bears will be thrown – it’ll be joyous.” The 58-year-old Londoner adds: “I’m so excited at the prospect of it being a girl. William will definitely call her Diana – it’ll be her middle name. If it’s a boy – Charles. The boys were nurtured by their father – you can see the bond.”

For now, we’re left with speculation over the name and sex of the baby, but soon-to-be grandmother Carole Middleton hinted to the press that the baby will be a Leo (July 22nd – Aug 23rd). But with two expected due dates July 13th and 19th come and gone, your guess is as good as ours.

Royal Protocol: How the news will be broken

  • Announcement stating that the Duchess has been admitted hospital.
  • First to be informed of the birth will be the Queen, followed by Prime Minister David Cameron and governors general of each of the Commonwealth nations, along with the royal and Middleton families.
  • Announcement of birth will come in a formal bulletin, placed in a gilt frame positioned on an easel in Buckingham Palace forecourt
  • Unlikely that the Queen will be awoken should the baby arrive in the night. Official announcement will be made in the morning.

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