Former first lady Michelle Obama and Queen Elizabeth have had a warm rapport with one another since the day they met and bonded over uncomfortable heels over a decade ago.
As Obama recounted in her memoir “Becoming,” the pair shared a highly relatable moment in 2009 when they were together at the G-20 summit. Per Harper’s Bazaar, their encounter initially raised some eyebrows because the former first lady put her arm around the queen and royal protocol prohibits touching Her Majesty.
Obama recounted the queen commenting that wearing heels was “unpleasant,” prompting the two to commiserate about their uncomfortable feet. Obama said she instinctively put her arm around Queen Elizabeth, but the queen didn’t seem to mind and, in fact, returned the hug (via Harper’s Bazaar).
Six years later, when it was time for world leaders and dignitaries to present gifts to the queen, Michelle Obama’s thoughtful present was just perfect. As reported by Reader’s Digest, the first lady put together a special gift box for Queen Elizabeth.
The box was filled with lovely items
Per Reader’s Digest, the box contained a number of items including a candle, pots of honey, a “honeycomb and bee bud vase” from Tiffany & Co., lemon verbena tea, and a jar of honey butter with a personal touch. It was homemade from the White House’s garden. It seems Michelle Obama’s vast skill set extends to the art of putting together the perfect gift box for the queen.
And regarding that hug? Queen Elizabeth’s senior dressmaker Angela Kelly set the record straight in her own book, according to Insider.
“Much has been made about the meeting between Michelle and Her Majesty, when an instant and mutual warmth was shared between these two remarkable women, and protocol was seemingly ‘abandoned’ as they stood closely with their arms around each other’s backs,” Kelly wrote, per Insider.
“In reality, it was a natural instinct for the Queen to show affection and respect for another great woman, and really there is no protocol that must be adhered to,” Kelly continued. Royal commentator Victoria Arbiter told Insider that the general “no touching” rule is for security reasons, but Kelly clarified that it doesn’t extend to individuals the queen trusts and knows.
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