TODAY | November 16, 2010
>>> let the wedding bells ring at buckingham palace . prince william and kate middleton are now officially engaged. let's bring in robert johnson , editor of "the royal world." good morning to both of you.
>> good morning.
>> let me start with you, there have been so much speculation about these two getting engaged, why do you think they decided that now was the right time?
>> well, now is the right time because next year is going to be the perfect year to get married, the year after, we -- and also it's the queen's silver so she'll be on the throne for almost 60 years, that's extraordinary. so this year is the year where there is time and space for them to get married and they have been together, a real love story for over eight years.
>> they got engaged, robert in kenya last month. how do you think they were able to keep it quiet even this long?
>> well, actually there has been some news leaking out since kenya. i actually wrote that they would be getting engaged before christmas and i also heard that they're looking to point a female bodyguard for kate middleton which was written over the weekend. so that sort of news begins to worry them, they want to be the first to the announcement, they don't want to be beaten to it. so obviously it was time to announce it. what a beautiful day for them to do so. beautiful blue skies here at buckingham palace .
>> and they went to a wedding together, one of their friend's weddings, before they have always gone in separately and gone out separately. and they made a show out of being together.
>> she wasn't actually wearing an engagement ring so obviously they wanted to keep the secrecy going for as long as possible.
>> what can you tell us about kate middleton , does she have any royalty in her background?
>> there was talk that she was actually related through a common ancestor, some tyrant who was the governor of the channel islands . but no, not really, her family are very ordinary, she's a middle class girl, her mother's family on that side, they were miners in the north of england , so no, she has no royal connections whatsoever. and the truth is it makes it more interesting for a royal wedding and she's a middle class girl therefore she's a modern princess for a modern era and this is a good thing for the royal family .
>> it might be a good break from the past because princess diana came out of the top drawer and that didn't work too well.
>> can she hold up under the scrutiny? it's going to get even more intense.
>> i think she's been so careful of the scrutiny, that's one of the reasons she hasn't taken a job and in fact there's a horrible nickname they call her here which is waity katie who says she didn't take a job because she didn't want the scrutiny of people talking about her, so she had to remain very much of a woman of mystery, a rather beautiful well-educated woman of mystery that i think the british will take to their hearts.
>> in the last eight years or so, she's had to get used to what it's really like to be close to prince william , close to the royal family , and there was a great anecdote that every time she went to a nightclub, she made sure she was completely made up when she went outside where the paparazzi were, she hadn't put a foot wrong which i think bodes well for the monarc monarchy.
>> and by the way, nbc's brian williams recently talked to prince william 's dad prince charge, you can catch him on his "dateline" special "the man who will be king."