Meghan Markle broke royal protocol and caught the attention of bystanders during a visit to Edinburgh on Tuesday when she unexpectedly hugged a member of the general public.
Social Bite Visit
One of Markle and Prince Harry's stops for their royal engagement ahead of their May 19 wedding was a visit to Social Bite, a café in Edinburgh that helps feed and employ the homeless. During their visit, the couple met staff and talked about the café's homelessness initiative.
It was while they were preparing to leave that Alice Thompson, one of the café's founders, talked to the future royal about the UN Women's conference in 2015. She told Markle that her speech about feminism and female empowerment inspired her. Their conversation ended with a hug outside the café.
Naturally, the gesture caught onlookers off-guard mainly because British royalty rarely shows affection in public. Likewise, according to royal protocol, members of the general public are not supposed to touch royals beyond a pleasant handshake.
Many may have observed how the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Prince William and Kate Middleton act around each other and to their supporters during royal engagements. They do not hold hands with each other and usually only shake hands with the people they meet.
Contrary to Markle and Prince Harry, they have not shied away from showing their affection for each other in public. The cameras often capture the couple holding hands and even smiling sweetly at each other. Although the Suits star is about to become a member of British royalty, it seems she still holds American traditions close to her heart.
This is the second time that Markle broke royal protocol. The first happened during the couple's third public engagement. The 36-year-old actress received hugs and kisses from school kids during a visit to Star Hub in Tremorfa, Cardiff. Prince Harry also welcomed a group hug from the kids.
Markle also broke one wardrobe protocol among British royals. She forgot to wear pantyhose during her engagement photoshoot.
Markle's demeanor toward other people reminds royal fans of Princess Diana, Prince Harry and Prince William's mother. She was known as a royal tradition-shaker. The late princess was known to have been very accommodating when it came to handing out hugs to people she met. She would hug children, patients, and workers at hospitals, organizations, and charities she visited. Prince Harry has been observed to take after his mother's practice when it comes to public interaction. It is no wonder he and Markle complement each other.