Prince Charles, who celebrates his 65th birthday on 14 November, seems so fulfilled by the warm, kindly presence of his wife Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, it's hard to remember that the couple once faced serious obstacles to their union.
It's thought they were introduced in the mid-70s by a mutual friend named Lucia Santa Cruz.
Another story is that a chance meeting at a polo match marked the start of the relationship between the young socialite – then Camilla Shand – and the eligible royal heir.
The duo – both aged 23 – began dating, but their romance cooled when the future King was called away on naval duties overseas. Eventually they married other people and had families.
It would be another 32 years after setting eyes on each that Charles and Camilla would get their happily ever after. Click on the photo to find out more about their long and at times difficult courtship.