While most use their honeymoon as an opportunity to spend time with their new spouse, Princess Diana had something different in mind—sleep. Vanity Fair got hold of several letters she sent to her personal secretary, Jane Parsons, M.B.E., in the 1980s. The letters will reportedly be auctioned off next month. One was composed from the Mediterranean aboard the Royal Yacht Britannia, where she and Prince Charles spent their honeymoon.
"The honeymoon was a perfect opportunity to catch up on sleep…." Diana, then only 20, wrote to Parsons. It's understandable that Diana needed a few days of rest, considering how intense planning her wedding must have been. The wedding between Diana and Charles was the quintessential royal wedding, broadcast around the world to hundreds of millions of viewers. The letter was dated August 15, 1981, soon after the July 29 wedding.
Vanity Fair shared several other details from the letters. When Prince William was born in 1982, the family received about 4,500 presents and sent out about 24,000 thank-you notes. William and Diana's birthdays were within two weeks of each other, causing a rush of presents for both of them. "I have never been more confused than on my birthday as presents and telegrams were pouring in for W at KP as well as my own—so at the moment I just seem to be churning out letters!" she wrote to Parsons. She also checked in with Parsons to make sure her staff wasn't feeling "exhausted, overworked and underpaid" following his birth.
And while her royal title came with a lot of amazing travel opportunities, traveling was not Diana's favorite activity. "William recognized us instantly, which was a relief as sometimes children resent their parents leaving them!" she wrote to Parsons in 1983 after getting home from a trip to Australia. "It's marvelous to be home again and hopefully we won't have to do any more traveling this year ... Wishful thinking!"