OUR unionist neighbours in Northern Ireland and the overwhelming population of the UK as a whole yesterday celebrated Queen Elizabeth’s milestone in becoming Britain’s longest serving monarch.
Many people in the south will remember the visit by the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh to our shores four years ago when she attended a state banquet at Dublin Castle, placed a wreath and bowed to the 1916 leaders at the Garden of Remembrance and - in a lighter moment - shared a joke with fishmonger Pat O’Connell at the English Market in Cork.
The Queen has hardly put a well-shod foot wrong since she ascended the throne in 1952 but has, in many ways, become more daring and radical in her old age.
Like Pope Francis, she has transcended the boundaries of her office and shown that it is not just the young and the restless who can be innovative and open to change.
While, as citizens of a republic rather than subjects of a monarch, we may hesitate to bend the knee, we can at least share the joy of our fellow islanders.
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