All little girls wait, starry eyed, to grow up. To grow up into a magical kingdom where dreams come true and where knights in shining armours and prince charmings arrive amidst fanfare, after slaying dragons. And then of course they live happily ever after. Every fairy-tale promises it. And every little girl believes in it. Us big girls are no less. We believe in it too, and we wait (mostly patiently) for those elusive knights/princes to come through.
Only difference is our dragons are different, and our happily-ever-afters somewhat evolved.
The modern day princess, along with her powers, also knows her limitations, which is why she doesnt expect too much from her brave rescuer. She is already insured so he needn’t worry about her dress getting singed with the dragons breath and she has her my own car, so she won’t be hitching rides on his valiant steed. She has a great job, so she will can help with the castle upkeep and is not too fussy about evil stepmothers because she learnt to deal with the bitch type in mher first year out in the real world of advertising. She won’t be too harassed about you being home on time,she can call over the other princesses for a girls day out, and dont worry at all about her being captured by any leftover villains, she is well prepared and always carries a can of pepper spray in her little princess’ bag.
However, the dragons that do need slaying in her realm are mostly ones that make up a princess’ daily life…the dragon of the “lonely days”…the dragons of “insecurity”…the dragon of “no-one-loves-me” and the dragons of “where-am-i-headed-in-life”. There are others too, far more easily slayed; dragons of the “flat tire”, dragons of the “crashed computer” and dragons of the “electric fuse”. Our knights doesnt need shields, they need dedication (hard to come by). Our princes dont need swords they need patience (even harder to come by).
Dragons slayed and hearts won, there comes the time for the happily ever after. Again, the highly evolved princess of this day and age is not too twinkle-eyed about this prospect. Instead she takes it in stride and accepts a more realistic outcome of this phrase. Mind you, realistic, not compromised. Her happily-ever-after is shaped by the true knights promises to not smoke in the bedroom or the car, and to sometimes clean up after dinner especially if she passes out in sheer exhaustion. Occasional back rubs, especially if she’s been working long hours will be appreciated and despite her contribution to the castle upkeep, she will expect a kings ransom every once in a while at her disposal for shopping to feel duly appreciated and won over. Happily-ever-after in the modern day princess manual also includes breakfast in bed on special occasions and an assurance that when shes suffering from PMS, the knight will not only be extra-sensitive and knightly, but will also make sure its her turn with the remote. It is also upto the prince to make sure that her laptop doesn’t crash and that she has a LAN connection to be able to stay connected 24/7and join the All-Princesses-Unite forum on orkut.
Random acts of kindness and generosity will not go unheeded and for her part the princess will make sure that all her duties are fulfilled, the castle is well lit and clean, the kingdom runs like a well oiled machine, the peasants are happy and that theres a ball every once in a while to maintain the look that happily-ever-after must project.
As long as Princey remembers his part of the deal (and something in heart tells her he will- after all, look at the dragons he slayed for her when they were going out!), she will be content in the knowledge that he loves her and will take care of her, even if he has his own own slightly warped, mainly self centred way of showing it.
And then, they will live happily-ever-after.