The royal visitor thanks local women after they performed a welcome dance for him
Photo: AFP
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Onlookers held their breath for a moment when it looked like Charles was about to eat a witchetty grub

3 MARCH 2005

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The Prince of Wales had an encounter with some bare-chested ladies on Wednesday, before being presented with a witchetty grub, by way of a tasty snack.

It was during a visit to the remote town of Alice Springs in Australia that Charles was offered the chance to try some local delicacies. He showed no hesitation in biting into a bush banana and a bush potato, but seemed rather less enthusiastic when Aboriginal ranger Doug Taylor invited him to chow down on a wriggling grub.

Fans of the Reality TV show I'm A Celebrity: Get Me Out Of Here may remember that both Jordan and Jennie Bond ate the larvae as part of their "bushtucker trials". For a moment it seemed Charles was about to follow suit, as he took the grub between two fingers and raised it to his mouth, but then he smiled and shook his head before placing it back down.

Earlier in the day the Prince had been greeted at the airport by five traditionally dressed native Australian women. After touching down in Alice Springs, he stepped out into the 40 degree plus heat to be greeted by a group of dancers from the Papunya tribe who performed a special welcome dance. Once they had completed the performance Charles took time to thank the women, whose semi-naked bodies were covered in red ochre.

The royal visitor seemed to be in good spirits throughout the day, though he confessed to feeling a little overwhelmed by the blistering sunshine. "It's like stepping into an oven," he joked. "My blood is still too thick."

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