A warm — and slightly awkward — Christmas memory. Meghan Markle revealed that her first holiday season with the British royal family didn’t go quite as smoothly as she initially believed.
The former actress, 41, shared her memories of her first trip to Sandringham during the third episode of her and Prince Harry‘s new Netflix series, Harry & Meghan, which debuted on Thursday, December 8. “At dinner, I was sat next to H’s grandfather and I just thought it was so wonderful,” the Bench author said. “I was like, ‘Oh, we chatted and it was so great and I talked about this and talked about this.'”
Her then-fiancé, however, soon burst her bubble. “[Harry] was like, ‘You had [his] bad ear. He couldn’t hear anything you were saying,'” Meghan recalled the Duke of Sussex, 38, telling her of Prince Philip. “I was like, ‘Oh, well, I thought it went really well.'”
The Suits alum added that she “so vividly” remembers spending Christmas at Sandringham in December 2017, one month after getting engaged to Harry. During the visit, she even called her mom, Doria Ragland, to gush about how much fun she was having.
“She’s like, ‘How’s it going?’ and I said, ‘Oh, my gosh, it’s amazing. It’s just like a big family like I always wanted,’” the California native recalled. “There was just this constant movement and energy and fun.”
At the time, Harry also said that his then-fiancée had a blast at his family’s Christmas celebration. “It was fantastic! She really enjoyed it,” the Invictus Games founder told BBC Radio 4’s Today show in December 2017. “The family loved having her there. I think together, we had an amazing time.”
Queen Elizabeth II famously spent the holidays at her Sandringham estate with her family most years since 1988. In 2020 and 2021, however, the late monarch celebrated Christmas at Windsor Castle because of the coronavirus pandemic. Last year marked Elizabeth’s first Christmas without her husband, who died at age 99 in April 2021.
Following the queen’s death at age 96 in September, King Charles III plans to return to Sandringham for this year’s celebration. Harry and Meghan, for their parts, have not publicly announced how they will spend the holidays.
Earlier this month, an insider exclusively told Us Weekly that Harry’s father, 74, is concerned about the couple’s Netflix series causing additional tension among the royal family. “The docuseries has left a bad taste in Charles’ mouth,” the source explained. “He’s more worried about it than anyone.”
According to the insider, the monarch isn’t interested in dealing with “drama” following the death of his mother. “While he’s putting on a brave face, behind closed doors he’s concerned that the docuseries will cause irreparable damage to the monarchy,” the source told Us.
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The first three episodes of Harry & Meghan are now streaming on Netflix. The final three episodes premiere on Thursday, December 15.
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