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*