Interview with Princess Charlene of Monaco Tatler

But the transition to life in this glittering enclave has been difficult, painful and lonely. “The people I worked with in Monaco had nothing to do with my South African mentality or humor,” she says. Then there was the inevitable language barrier – Charlene couldn’t speak French. (She has made a valiant effort to learn the language, however, and is becoming more fluent.)

It was also difficult for a sporty and informal South African girl to form true friendships in a highly protected icy community who expected Albert to choose one of his own as his wife. “Of course, I was prone to jealousy, but it comes with the territory,” she says. “Even though I have met some great people since living in Monaco, I consider them all to be acquaintances. I only have two people who I consider friends here. Above all, my real friends are my family. My mom and two brothers are the only friends I need and the only people I trust. I am very grateful to have them.

Charlene and Albert are united by a triumvirate of interests: humanitarianism, sport and the environment. “We both defend the environment. We are committed to preserving our ecosystem, ”she says. “We are also passionate about sports, in particular [about] rugby. I introduced Albert to cricket and he loves it now. He was a little skeptical at first, but he fully understands the purpose of the game now and finds it really exciting. Prince Albert himself is affable, extroverted and founded; he is also an accomplished sportsman, having participated in five Olympic Winter Games within the Monegasque bobsleigh team. Her choice of woman is telling in terms of her personal style – caring, informal and approachable. They are a vibrant couple, attending UN environmental summits one day, welcoming heads of state to their homes the next, and hopefully one day soon, producing a tribe of aesthetically pleasing heirs.


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