Sometimes, just sometimes, being the Presidential consort gets you to some unexpected places. And today, I find myself on the 'Maersk Dover', with a vehicle deck full of vintage military vehicles, veterans of the Dunkirk evacuations and representatives of military charities, the Royal British Legion and the War Graves Commission.
This is, in its way, a rather poignant event. The youngest of those who lived through the horror of Dunkirk are now in their late-eighties and early nineties, and there probably won't be many such gatherings in the future. However, those who have made it are a remarkably spry bunch, and Ros has taken great delight in chatting with them.
Of course, there is pageantry, with the Parachute Regimental Band, a speech by the Lord Lieutenant and the newly-elected MP. Photographers are on hand to take shots of saluting or waving veterans, and there are flags to be waved.
On arrival in Dunkirk, our ferry will moor in the Eastern Dock to await the flotilla of Little Ships, and there will be the formal ceremony of commemoration. It should be rather special...