We Knew It Was Coming, but the Queen’s Death Still Stuns Britain

Speechless at Buckingham Palace

There is the usual sprinkling of tourists when I arrive at Buckingham Palace at 7 p.m., just a few hours after Queen Elizabeth II died, having reigned for 70 years from this building at the heart of London. Mostly people are more curious than grief-stricken; they’ve gathered to mark the occasion, and more are coming from every direction, by foot, bike and car, black cabs constantly dropping off people who are clutching umbrellas and bouquets. There is affection here for the only monarch that most of us have ever known.