Today a piece of royal mail arrived. By all appearances it certainly looked underwhelming. It lacked the pomp and circumstance of other pieces of royal mail and the crown on the back of the envelope is the smallest I have seen.
I certainly wasn't expecting to find what is probably one of the most favorite pieces of royal mail.
I had written to Queen Paola of Belgium after it was announced in August that she was taking a period of “total rest” under doctors orders, and would be canceling all further engagements. It was reported by a number of paper that Queen Paola had suffered a stroke, but the Palace made no comment. She has yet to resume official duties.
Queen Paola is the mother of King Philippe of Belgium. Her husband, King Albert II, abdicated in 2013.
Inside the envelope was a card. The front is pictured below, and features a number of messages for all occasions in a number of languages.
The back of the card features Queen Paola's Monogram and a picture of her. The card has a handwritten a message from Queen Paola. The message is a copy, that was printed onto the card.
Queen Paola had written a handwritten message, that her office scanned and then printed on the card. This done for Queen Paola can send a handwritten message everyone, without have to write out cards to every individual person.
The message is bilingual, writing in French and Dutch, both official languages of Belgium. The message translates roughly, "Wholeheartedly thank you for your kind wishes."
Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall often sends out cards with pre-typed notes that she personally hand-signs.
Response from Belgium