A Real Fairy Tale in Reverse

In the classic tale of Cinderella, the title character goes from being a dusty housemaid, oppressed by her evil step-sisters, to marrying a prince and becoming a beautiful and beloved Princess. And everyone lives happily ever after. Today, in Japan, a couple married, hopefully to live happily ever after. But the bride did not marry into royalty. Instead, she lost her title of Princess upon tying the knot, all for the sake of true love.

Princess Sayako, 39, the only daughter of Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko, married commoner and Tokyo City employee Yoshiki Kuroda, 40. Kuroda is a longtime friend of Prince Akishino, one of the princess’s two older brothers. They met back in their childhood, and became reacquainted recently with help from the prince after he threw a tennis party two years ago. Since then, Yoshiki and Sayako have kept in touch through e-mail and cell phones.

The Shinto wedding ceremony took place at Tokyo’s Imperial Hotel today, where the couple told reporters: “In the beginning of our new life, I believe there will be many things we are not used to and unexpected events, but we would like to join hands and move step by step.” About 30 people from both families attended the ceremony. The former princess said that she was relieved that the wedding ended smoothly, and gave her thanks to those who supported them. Her father, the Emperor, told her: “Our family ties will not change, so come to see us from time to time.” Under a 1947 law, female royals are automatically stripped of their title when they are married. In order to prepare herself for life as a taxpayer, the Princess took driving lessons and practiced shopping at supermarkets.

When the couple left the palace, they were greeted by thousands of well-wishers along the roads, some exclaiming “Banzai!”, while others waved the national flag. Though she was marrying a commoner, the wedding was done by royal standards. The couple will move into an apartment. Her parents approve of the wedding, according to Sayako. “I feel very happy that the emperor regards my new life as a continuation, not as a complete break.” The parents released a statement, saying: “We hope the couple will continue to receive support and begin their new life in peace.”

In order to be married, she had to give up royalty, a title of power and honor, all for the sake of her true love. And that, my dear readers, is more honorable than any fairy tale out there.

Sources: Japan Today, Associated Press
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One Response to “A Real Fairy Tale in Reverse”

  1. Erika Says:

    FINALLY one that ends happily ever after!! I LOVE fairy tales!!

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