It’s not easy when everyone is trying to tear you down, but you make a commitment and you stick to it. In other parts of the entertainment world, it sometimes seems like marriage is so disposable. But country has some enduring marriages – Johnny and June, George and Nancy, Faith and Tim. I’m thankful we have those role models. I feel like our peers are rooting for us. They’re holding us up.
George’s letters home were Eeyore-ishly self-pitying. ‘The amount one is expected and has to do is simply awful,’ he grumbled. His Cuirassier helmet 'looked somewhat like an extinguisher on a candle’, his uniform didn’t fit, and he had 'absolutely walked miles in the Schloss as W’s rooms are at the other end of the Castle and every minute I have to come back and put on another uniform’. Worst of all his new boots 'hurt abominably’.
The Prince of Wales, later George V writing home from Kaiser Wilhelm II’s birthday celebrations. From Miranda Carter’s The Three Emperors
In 1885, when [Nicholas Romanov] was seventeen, a series of eminent ministers and academics was summoned to Gatchina to lecture the tsarevitch on international law, chemistry, military science and finance. It was a two-year mini-apprenticeship in government – a belated acknowledgement that one day he would actually be in charge of the whole Russian empire. How much benefit Nicky really derived from it was questionable.
One of his lecturers, Konstantin Pobedonostsev, later said that when he tried to explain the workings of the tsarist state to Nicky, “I could only observe that he was completely absorbed in picking his nose.”
George, Nicholas and Wilhelm: Three Royal Cousins and the Road to World War I. By Miranda Carter.
He [Wilhelm II] returned to Europe [from his tour of the Holy Land] in autumn to find Britain on the point of war with France over a solitary little fort in the middle of nowhere in southern Sudan called Fashoda. Fashoda was the point where French plans to dominate Africa east to west, from Dakar to Djibouti, intersected with British plans to connect South Africa to Cairo.
A French troop occupied the fort; a British one sat outside it – very politely. The two commanders took tea together.
The quote is taken from George, Nicholas and Wilhelm: Three Royal Cousins and the Road to World War I by Miranda Carter.