SYDNEY – Prince Harry and Meghan sat barefoot on Bondi Beach on Friday talking and hugging a circle of colourfully dressed surfers who are raising awareness for mental health and wellbeing.
With surfers riding waves behind them, the royal couple took part in the local One Wave group’s “Fluoro Friday” session, where people dress in bright colours and share experiences of mental health problems, an issue Prince Harry has taken to heart.
Overcast skies and early morning fog didn’t deter the large crowd who greeted the couple, also known as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, with many schoolchildren skipping the first few hours of school to catch a glimpse of the royals.
The pair wore colourful leis and sat on beach towels with One Wave for a long talk, part of the group’s weekly “anti-bad vibes circle,” at times wrapping arms around each other and embracing.
The charity, which encourages people to “get in the ocean, surf it out and talk about” depression and anxiety, presented the couple with a signed surfboard.
Despite media hopes the prince would strip off and dive into the surf – especially as he began waxing a surfboard – he stayed dry in his blue shirt and khaki chinos.
Meghan wore a black and white maxi dress by Melbourne designer Martin Grant that left her shoulders bare, her hair pulled back into a pony tail.
The couple shook hundreds of hands of locals who lined up five deep along a barrier at the beach. The royals met Bondi Beach lifesavers and just before Prince Harry got into his waiting car, he ran over to accept a gift of a headband from a thrilled little girl. -DPA