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Prince William's choice welcomed by Britain

"She's one of us," says approving British public of Kate Middleton.

The references to Diana, the former Princess of Wales who was killed alongside her lover Dodi Fayed in a 1997 Paris car crash, and Camilla Parker-Bowles, who William's father Prince Charles married after a much-publicized affair, are inevitable.

The circumstances of Diana's demise (she was being pursued by paparazzi photographers at the time) and its perceived humanizing influence on the royal family have hung over William's adult life — perhaps even informing his choice of bride.

"He's taken his time — I suppose that's why they call her 'waity Katie,'" said Marion Smith, another Queen's Park resident. "But after what happened to his mother, he had to make sure it was right, and I suppose if she's right for him, she's right for us."

Not everyone is happy. At a time when the country is being asked to endure harsh austerity measures to pay for the financial follies of the past decade, some see a lavish wedding as inappropriate.

"I want to know who will be paying for all the fancy frocks," said self-confessed "anti-monarchist" Jo Bain. Bain isn't alone, and there are already mutterings on the sidelines of government that the whole wedding is being conveniently timed to distract from coming hardships.

Political blogger Guido Fawkes noted pointedly that the engagement was used by the government as a "good day to bury bad news," — in this case, an embarrassing climb down by Prime Minister David Cameron over using public cash to employ a personal photographer.

Still, wedding fever could yet cure even the most hardened of cynics. Adds Bain, "I suppose there is another side to it. The commoner marrying the prince: I could end up getting quite excited."

But what about 8-year-old Eva? Is she enthralled by the idea that she is growing up in a country where fairytale weddings come true and perhaps she could one day marry a prince if she so chooses?

Displaying a precocious grasp of the kind of media savvy that Middleton will need if she is to survive becoming a member of the most talked-about family on Earth, Eva responded: "No comment."

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/united-kingdom/101116/prince-william-kate-middleton