there it is. pernille officially becomes the danish ambassador to canberra at precisely 11:00a.m., september 29, 2020.

she presented credentials to the governor general, david hurley at a formal ceremony at government house just over a week after we exited quarantine.

it was a grand day and a grandiose event, complete with a military band and a presentation of arms. the new ambassador even ‘trooped the line’, an old british military custom.

the weather was ideal, and event was a spectacle of the first order, scripted with military precision from the moment we were collected at the residence by a protocol officer at precisely 10:50 a.m. until we were deposited back at the embassy, at 11:27 a.m. that’s exactly 37 minutes. herewith the script, for your amusement and edification.

and so it came to pass that at precisely 11:00 a.m., not 10:59 or 11:01, pernille handed over the credential documents and went from being the “HOM (head of mission) designate to official representative of denmark in australia. Then, following exactly 10 minutes of tea, she with the governor general and me with lady hurley, we proceeded to the garden for exactly four minutes of photographs.

governor general hurley points to the massive estate grounds where one of australia’s finest herds of protected kangaroos live an exalted life

the photographer, quite a pro, had the riser and fill lights in place. our appointed places were laid out in attachment C of the program, and the snap-snap was done in a flash, so to speak.

then, precisely at 11:17 a.m. the governor general and mrs. hurley bade us farewell and disappeared back into the residence, presumably to change back into jeans and t-shirts and resume watching their favorite daytime soap operas. (or perhaps to plan australia’s next military invasion)

but for pernille, it was off to review the troops.

after the playing of the royal anthem (pernille testified that it was well done by the band), she reviewed the troops. then, at exactly 11:22, we were escorted to the crown rolls-royce and bade farewell.

the lap of (old fashioned) luxury, this car provided the ultimate in early 20th century comfort. no USB port, no sat-nav, but a chatty driver who told us we were sitting in the exact seats that once held the famous fanny of princess diana. no joke. the real princess di, and presumably the never-to-be-king, prince charlie.

then back to the embassy for more photos with staff. the crown car, by the way, arrived in the embassy driveway precisely 11:27 a.m.

then inside the embassy for a bit of refreshment. (notice the champagne flutes), which went on without schedule till the refreshment had been consumed.

now, it’s on to other capitals to which pernille is assigned as denmark’s representative. this is the real hard part of the job.

pernille must present credentials to the heads of state of new zealand (probably the governor general patsy reddy), as well as the island nation of fiji (which has a president). she is also likely to have to visit several other small south pacific island countries, because each of them has a vote in the UN general assembly and denmark is a candidate for one of the rotating security council seats in 2024.

the campaigning has already started, so this may mean visits to such island paradises as samoa, vanuatu, tuvalu, tonga and maybe even nauru, which has a population of about 10,000 and only receives about 200 tourists in a normal year, but still has a vote in the UN general assembly just as much as the P-5 permanent security council members. so it looks like we’ll have to keep our bathing suits (costumes) packed as soon as the COVID restrictions are lifted.

for right now, however, i’ve got to wrap up this everlong blog post and go see what she’s cooking up for dinner.

tomorrow’s her birthday, so tomorrow night we’re heading out to a highly recommended (by a delhi-wallah) indian restaurant. then friday night it’s tacos, prepared by el paso’s highly-touted chef pedro. truly OLD el paso.

they say what goes around comes around. c’mon tacos.

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