In the run up to the royal visit I have to admit total disinterest.

Of course I hoped the Queen would be afforded the respect any visitor deserves and also that nothing would happen to her on Irish soil, but other than that I wasn’t bothered. Then she arrived, full of smiles, she bowed her head, she seemed genuinely fond of Mary MacAleese, she spoke a cupla focail, she seemed to truly enjoy a night of Irish culture