On her first overseas royal tour, Meghan smoothly sailed through her very own duchess decathlon.
She aced her airport arrival in Dublin in a chic green Givenchy pencil skirt and top (in honour of her host country), met with Ireland’s prime minister and president, charmed children and sipped champagne at an elegant evening reception.
“She was so engaged in the way she looked at people in the crowd,” says Mary Lord, a local who came to see Meghan and Prince Harry during their July 11 appearance.
As she hits the 75-day mark of royal life since her May 19 wedding, the Duchess of Sussex, 36, has already proved her ability to navigate a series of daunting firsts. With each milestone, she has pulled off the complex choreography
of royal protocol—under the scrutiny of a global spotlight.
“She’s doing amazing,” says her close friend, actress Priyanka Chopra. “It’s so nice to see.”
She’s also clearly taking her cues from both her inner circle and her new family. At Wimbledon on July 14, “she very much let Kate take the lead,” says veteran royal photographer Mark Stewart.
“There was no rivalry. It shows how well Meghan has adapted, as she is aware that Kate will be Queen one day and her position is different.”
Although she has quickly adapted to many of the minutiae of royal dos and don’ts, she “has found certain rules in the royal household difficult to understand, like the fact that the Queen prefers women in dresses or skirts rather than trouser suits, and is often asking Harry why things have to be done in a certain way,” says a source.
“I think she finds it a little frustrating at times, but this is her new life and she has to deal with it.”
With each new experience, Meghan learns more—and prepares for what’s to come, including a tour of Australia, Fiji, Tonga and New Zealand to coincide with Harry’s Invictus Games for wounded warriors in October.
“She’s very action- oriented,” says Suhani Jalota, founder of the Mumbai-based Myna Mahila Foundation, who first met Meghan last year and was a guest at the wedding. When she visited the foundation a few years ago, “She came in and learned everything from scratch, and then she backed that up with evidence that she knew and had researched.”
She’s now applying that same focus to her massive new role. “She has changed her identity from an international television star to a newcomer and apprentice,” says Lacey, “and a very willing apprentice at that.”
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