Well, this is fun! Not the part about how this trip is to thank people for all their hard work during a pandemic; just the fact that we’ve finally got new stuff to properly talk about and we’re getting a look at the Royal Train, which is a smart way to travel during a pandemic if you’ve got one at hand, as I assume you do. There is a VERY pivotal scene in The Heir Affair set aboard the Royal Train, so I know a fair bit about it — fun fact, when the Queen is aboard overnight, the train slows down during Her Royal Bathtime so it’s not too sloshy for her. It runs on used cooking oil! It’s sort of boring-looking inside! Etc! (As you can imagine, the Daily Mail had a variety of articles about What The Inside of The Royal Train Looks Like that I pored over in the middle of the night when we were writing the book.)

You can see some of it here:

(Technically, that tweet is a little misleading; it’s Kate’s first trip on it, and their first trip together, but Wills has been on the Royal Train before.) Anyway, trains are great fun:

They set off on Sunday night and slept abroad the train, which seems like it’s at least theoretically a sort of romantic set-up (trains are romantic methods of travel), and then arrived in Scotland this morning to visit with a variety of folks — teachers, public transportation drivers, elder care workers, EMTs, etc.  (There has been some discussion about whether this trip breaks certain pandemic rules; Nicola Sturgeon’s response to the question seems sort of like a carefully crafted non-thrilled non-response. She probably doesn’t have the capacity right now to get into this.)(They are in fact skipping Northern Ireland due to its full lockdown.)(Also, just FYI, there is a variety of mask-situations happening herein; I purposefully did not pull the pics where someone was yapping away with his mask below his nose but otherwise, let’s assume that everyone’s own mask police is at work.) (We live in unfortunately interesting times.) Anyway! We’ve got MULTIPLE coats and also a variety of scarves.

Also reindeer:


[Photos: Getty Images, Shutterstock]