Charles and Camilla visit Krakow (or Why I will never be a paparazzi)

Prince Charles, future king of Blighty, and his wife Camilla visited Krakow today taking everyone completely by surprise. Thanks to Polandian’s omniscient reader, the mysterious ‘guest,’ I was tipped off twenty four hours in advance and got myself down to the Rynek Glowny at about one with my trusty compact digital in hand.

There was a modest, but not overwhelming, crowd clustered around the west door of the Kosciol Mariacki so I sauntered over and positioned myself for the perfect snapshot over the shoulder of a short guy in the front row. I was feeling fairly confident that I could capture the perfect picture, perhaps a shy glance between the couple that would speak a thousand words and net me a tidy fortune from a tabloid photo desk. Little did I know.

Perfect position for award winning Royal photo. Local plod strutting about rather self consciously waiting for some bloke called Karol to turn up.

At 19 minutes past the hour two things happened that put a slight crimp in my plan. First, a swarm of German teenage girls charged my position waving camera phones in the air and shrieking “Camilla! Camilla!” Second, a trio of shiny black people carriers screeched to a halt in front of me and disgorged a pack of eager-looking crew-cut young men wearing ear pieces and cheap suits. I could see not a thing. I just about caught a glimpse of the back of the royal heads as they made their way into the basilica.

Having read the itinerary I knew the royals were due to head over to the Sukiennice after leaving the church. Cunningly I positioned myself on a bench halfway between the two and waited smugly while the press photographers crammed around the door waiting for their quarry to emerge. Amateurs.

Perfect! They’re coming straight towards me and I’m stood on a bench!

The approaching pack of journos spotted my bench and started swarming around it. A short bloke with a lens the length of his arm tried to jostle me off my perch, but I kneed him in the groin and he went down under the feet of the hoi polloi. As the Royal couple drew level I cleared my throat loudly and they both looked up at me. I pressed the shutter release… and at exactly that moment a mad bag lady on the opposite side of the crowd lunged forward muttering something, and everyone looked round. Damn it!!

Royals, cops, bodyguards and everyone else in a 5 yard radius turns to look at the mad bag lady. Result, excellent shot of the back of Royal bonces. *sigh*

Fail.

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15 thoughts on “Charles and Camilla visit Krakow (or Why I will never be a paparazzi)

  1. That idiotic bag lady should be shot…for ‘ruining’ your shot! Hee hee!

    Well done for your papparazzi efforts. Think you still did a great job!

  2. guest says:

    If you want more fotos ,go there

    http://zdjecia.pap.pl/

    and type “krakow” in the search engine.

  3. island1 says:

    I assume she was dragged away and locked in Wawel’s deepest darkest dungeon. She deserves no less.

  4. Pawel says:

    Island1, thanks for being our war correspondent! I can imagine you standing there with the camera on the front line:))

    PS. Why was this event so much fuss? They are normal people, he even sells biscuits and cream fudge;D I wonder if there was a biscuit selling van behind them…

  5. island1 says:

    guest: Of course you’re not blocked :)

    Anything with a link in it tends to get stopped for moderation by Akismet, but we do always look there eventually.

    Thanks again.

  6. scatts says:

    This is where the benefits of a fast shutter release become rather obvious. Most of these compacts are pants when it comes to sharp-shooting.

    Nice try though. I see the tactics you were employing. Full frontal of Cammy, lens cracked, buy decent camera to replace it! ;)

  7. island1 says:

    Scatts: I know, the shutter speed is ridiculous, people have to stand still for 30 seconds while I disappear behind a black curtain.

  8. island1 says:

    Pawel: Prince Charles = ‘normal people’? Are you sure?

  9. Pawel says:

    Agree, there is no such thing as normal;))

    You know, being born in a communist country, now I living in a republic, it’s unsurprising it’s hard to fall for the charms of monarchy;)

    PS. i liked the ones with chocolate http://www.duchyoriginals.com/public/products/default.aspx?categoryid=10

  10. […] reports on Prince Charles' visit to Poland. Posted by Veronica Khokhlova Share […]

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  12. simon says:

    The reason you’re not much of a paparazzi has nothing to do with your photographic skills – more with you not recognizing the fact that you got something much more interesting than a standard “royal” shot. If the mad bag lady wanted anything more than an autograph from Charles and his lovely bride, you probably passed up a chance to score decent cash from the likes of the Mirror or the Sun. Charlie’s recognizable enough – imagine a headline in 3-inch lettering screaming “Charles attacked by scorned lover” or “I’m your illegitimate daughter!”.

  13. island1 says:

    It’s true, secretly I’m proud of my action shot (even if it was a complete accident).

  14. krakow says:

    sorry, but I also live in Krakow and there are millions of better things to see there than a visit of some camel and her royal escort.

    nice story with the strange lady though, I think she gave you a much more interesting theme than the astonished at your throat-cleaning-noise-royal-couple.

  15. island1 says:

    krakow: “Camel”! You’ll never get an OBE now.

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