Insider sent two reporters to a royal event celebrating the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, which marks her 70th year on the throne. It was held outside the Old Admiralty Building in London, near Buckingham Palace.
Trooping the Colour is an annual celebration of the Queen’s birthday that brings together royal officers, horses, and musicians. This was the first of three events celebrating the monarch’s Platinum Jubilee, and it was overseen by Major General C J Ghika.
Neither reporter had previously attended a royal event, but they both expected some pomp and fanfare for the occasion.
When reporters arrived at 9:45 a.m., ahead of the 10 a.m. start time, it didn’t appear that many people had turned out for the spectacle.
It was strange to see some Londoners going about their usual Saturday activities while the event was taking place.
The location of the event was not clear, and the staff was not always helpful in providing directions or timings. The organizers of the event did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.
The walk from Green Park, the nearest tube station to Buckingham Palace, to the event took over 5,000 steps. It was a long and exhausting walk.
Changing footwear into formal dress shoes wasn’t glamorous, and one Insider reporter got a blister from rushing to the event.
The line to enter the event was over 300 people long, and some attendees did not make it inside the event grounds at Horse Guards Parade until 10:30 a.m.
Some people adapted to the event’s formal dress code, while others did not.
Some attendees had no idea what they were going to — one attendee told Insider he thought he was going to a horse show.
Having checked in felt similar to going through airport security.
There was horse dung everywhere, which left a distinct smell in the air.
A massive puddle of water inside the event looked dreary next to the parading royal officers.
Except for the damp ground, there was nowhere for people who purchased standing-only tickets to put their bags.
There was no shade, even for those with seated bleacher tickets.
Because there was no food or drink available to buy, some participants brought their own.
Without shade or water, Insider’s reporters became sunburned and dehydrated.
When the national anthem was played, some bleachers collapsed, sending three people to the hospital and two others to be treated at the scene by paramedics. According to an Army spokesperson, the rest of the stand was safely evacuated.
Attendees needed cash to purchase the event brochure, which detailed all of the ceremonial procedures.
The Queen’s carriage arrived, but it was impossible to tell if she was inside.
It was difficult to take the royal ceremony seriously when children shouted, “Mommy, the horse pooped.”
People didn’t know when to stand up and clap as the parade proceeded.
This article originally appeared in yahoo and has been updated.