On Friday it was the birthday of the Crown Prince, the son of the Sultan. The military held a party at the officers' mess at Bolkiah Camp, and at Friday lunchtime I had a text from Rob saying spouses were allowed to come along too - so would I like to?
Never one to miss out on a slice of birthday cake I jumped at the chance. Always nice to shake the royal hand again too...
The food was great - I only managed to get a photo of the debris after the meal - but we had chicken curry, roti, and some lovely savoury pastries.
I wish I'd managed to get a photo of the cake before it was cut - it was awesome! Huge, and shaped like a golden star. It was pretty tasty too!
As I was walking back to my car after the party I was excited to see the royal motorcade driving past, complete with motorcycle out-riders.
And a trumpet fanfare as they drove out of the gates.
The royals are much-loved here in Brunei, and being such a small country they're pretty 'visible' - a friend of mine first met the Sultan in one of the local supermarkets (OK, he wasn't doing his weekly shop, I think it was something official, but even so..!). They open the Palace for 3 days every Hari Raya, and the Sultan and members of the royal family are constantly in the papers, photographed at various events all over Brunei. I don't remember the last time I saw one of the British royal family 'in person' (probably when I saw Charles and Di in Hereford when I was about 10 years old!), so I still find it quite exciting to meet Bruneian royalty!