Meghan Markle: Nervous but mostly charming in…


Meghan Markle joined Queen Elizabeth II for their first solo outing together in northwest England, and the new Duchess of Sussex looked like she is becoming more traditionally royal.

Notably, the wife of Prince Harry wore pantyhose instead of bare legs, eschewed her messy bun and kept her legs slanting and crossed at the ankles while sitting. The American-born Meghan also didn’t wear a dress that was too revealing, unlike the off-the-shoulder designer ensemble she donned at last weekend’s Trooping the Colour at Buckingham Palace.

Overall, Meghan seemed to charm the crowds and, most important, her husband’s grandmother. The 36-year-old former TV actress and the 92-year-old monarch at one point looked relaxed and giggled as they sat together at an event marking the opening of a new bridge in Cheshire, about 200 miles north of London.

“They were very relaxed,” said Judi James, a leading body language and communication expert, who was asked by the British tabloid The Daily Mail to analyze photos and videos of the two women together. “At one point they were giggling like teenagers together. The queen looked delighted to be with her.”

“The queen was doing everything right for her and made her look like a granddaughter or a friend whom she is very fond of,” James added.

But another body language expert told the Daily Mail that Markle, who has years of professional training and experience in stage and on-camera performance, also appeared to be nervous during the outing.

In looking at Meghan stepping off the royal train behind the queen, Robin Kermode noted “a little tension in her left hand with both shoulders slightly raised.”

These body positions showed “a little nervousness … a clear desire too get this right,” Kermode told the Daily Mail.  “I suspect we would all behave in the same way in this situation.”

That nervousness later gave way to Meghan seeming to fidget or to be bored or distracted during a conversation with a local official at the bridge opening, psychotherapist Toby Ingham told the Daily Mail.

The duchess seemed uncertain about what to do with her hands as she chatted with David Parr, chief executive of Halton Council. At one point, she kept tucking her hair behind her ears.

Ingraham told the Daily Mail: “It appears that the man on Meghan’s right is the cause of her fidgetiness. It looks like she is rather distracted by his interest, information and conversation than anything to do with the queen.”

At one point, Meghan also seemed uncertain about what to do with her clutch purse, and ended up placing it on the floor.

Then again, those are small points. And all that matters on this occasion is what the queen thought, the experts said.

All the experts agreed that Elizabeth II looked pleased to be with her adored grandson’s new bride and was satisfied with her ability to handle herself at events on behalf of the royal family.

“The body language of the Queen and Meghan is warm, friendly; they look to be enjoying the time they are spending together,” Ingham told the Daily Mail. “When sitting together they move in towards each other and enjoy a shared joke. The impression of spontaneity and warmth.”

The queen and the new duchess travelled overnight on the royal train to Cheshire. In addition to attending the event for the opening of the Mersey Gateway Bridge, they also watched a performance by local school children, toured a children’s library and met a Syrian settlement group engaged in craft work, the Daily Mail reported.

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