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9780767923095

Diana Chronicles
Diana Chronicles
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  • ISBN-13: 9780767923095
  • ISBN: 076792309X
  • Publisher: Broadway Books

AUTHOR

Brown, Tina

SUMMARY

Chapter Twenty The Last Picture Show Is she an angel? Helena Ussova, aged seven, land-mine victim in Angola, January 1997 Diana never looked better than in the days after her divorce. Divestment was the name of the game, in her life and in her looks. The downsizing started with her Kensington Palace staff, which she reduced to cleaner, cook, and dresser. The assiduous Paul Burrell became maitre d' of her private life, combining the roles of P.A., man Friday, driver, delivery boy, conFidant, and crying towel. "He used to pad around listening to all," says a friend of Diana's mother. "I was quite sure his ear was pressed Firmly to the key hole when I went to Kensington Palace for lunch." Diana reinforced her break with married life by stufFing a heavy-duty garbage bag with her entire set of Prince of Wales china and then smashing it with a hammer. "Make a list of everything we need," she told Burrell. "Let's spend a bit more ofhismoney while we can." Diana now used police protection only when she attended a public event. Her favorite ofFicer was Colin Tebbutt, who had retired from the Royal Squad. He was a tall, fair-haired matinee idol who was also a Class One driver, trained by the SAS. Tebbutt knew that by going to work for Diana he was effectively shutting the door to any future work with the Prince of Wales, but he had a soft spot for Diana. "There was always a buzz when she was at home. I thought she was beginning to enjoy life. She was a different lady, maturing." Tebbutt says she would always sit in the front of the car, unlike the other Royals, such as Princess Margaret, who called him by his surname and, without looking up from her newspaper, barked, "Wireless!" when she wanted Tebbutt to turn on the radio. "I drive looking in all three mirrors, so I'd say to Diana 'I'm not looking at your legs, Ma'am' and she'd laugh." The press knew the faces of Diana's drivers, so to shake them off Tebbutt sometimes wore disguises. "She wanted to go to the hairdresser one day, shortly before she died. I had an old Toyota MRT which she called the 'tart trap,' so I drove her in that. I went to the trunk and got out a big baseball hat and glasses. When she came out I was dripping with sweat, and she said 'What on earth are you doing?' I said, 'I'm in disguise.' She said, 'It may have slipped your notice, butI'mthe Princess of Wales.' " Every Tuesday night, the Princess sat at her desk in her study at Kensington Palace, writing her steady stream of heartfelt thank-you letters and listening to a piano playing Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto No. 2 andher favoriteManning Sherwin's "A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square." In the living room, Maureen Stevens, a clerk from the Prince of Wales's ofFice, who also happened to be a talented concert pianist, gave Diana a weekly private recital as she worked. You can almost hear Stevens's piano rippling in the background as Diana writes a fulsome note to her close friend,Harper's Bazaareditor Liz Tilberis: "Dearest Liz, How proud I was to be at your side on Monday evening... so deeply moved by your personal touchthe presents for the boys, candles at the hotel and owers to name but few but most of all your beaming smile, your loving heart. I am always here for you, Liz." Sometimes Diana would stop and telephone theDaily Mail'sRichardBrown, Tina is the author of 'Diana Chronicles' with ISBN 9780767923095 and ISBN 076792309X.

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