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If you were due to have a baby in a foreign country, and wanted your mother to be there, how long before the due date would you ask your mum to fly in?
Well, Meghan Markle’s mother arrived in the U.K. on Monday evening, it is being reported.
Some saw this as evidence that Meghan’s baby could be here really, really soon, while others concluded that Doria Ragland’s arrival indicated only the beginning of the birth window, and that we may, therefore, still have a considerable number of days of waiting to go. (Still others don’t believe she is pregnant at all, of course.)
One consolation for the British press corps of Harry and Meghan’s decision to keep the details of the birth private—with no details of where the baby is to be born being released to the media—is that there is no incentive for the media to gather, exposed to the elements, outside the Lindo Wing (or any other hospital) for weeks on end before the birth.
Instead, the only thing to do is to huddle hopefully around the SussexRoyal Instagram feed for updates.
As the favored dates for the birth (April 21, the Queen’s birthday, was the previous pick) come and go, it is becoming increasingly likely that William could miss the birth as he is due to travel to New Zealand to pay his respects to the victims of the mosque shooting on Wednesday and Thursday, returning between Friday and Saturday.
Of course, no one can predict when a baby born without intervention will arrive, but it would be odd to have organized this trip to coincide with Meghan’s due date.
It may seem to some a bizarre bit of planning for William to be undertaking such a somber piece of official business in Australasia if there is a real chance that, on the other side of the world, his brother and his wife could be celebrating the arrival of their first child.
Not only would the arrival of a royal baby obliterate all other royal news, meaning William’s trip to New Zealand would not get the coverage it deserves, but such a scheduling conflict between the brothers would fuel the feud narrative, which burst back into life this weekend with reports that Harry and Meghan could be exiled to Africa to avoid overshadowing William and Kate, if it appeared William was snubbing the baby’s birth.
If one assumes that both William and Doria want to be in the country when the baby is born, then it could well be that the baby isn’t perhaps due until the very last days of April or even early May.
The latest betting from gambling website Paddy Power supports this thesis: If you bet the baby will be born this week, you’ll get four times your stake back. But if you opt for next week (April 29-May 6), it’s just three times, making that week of late April /early May the hot favorite.