UPDATE: Originally this post was called "Royal Half-Time Report," and that's what I get for writing things when I'm sleepy. Of course, July is the SEVENTH month of the year, not the sixth! Oops.
So here, with a new improved name, is a look back at the current state of Prince William's romance with Catherine "Kate" Middleton. Will they ever get engaged? Here are the clues we've received so far in 2009:
JANUARY: Kate's parents are invited to meet William's father and step-mother, Charles and Camilla. William surprises Kate with a romantic dinner in a log cabin.
Kate turns 27. For her birthday, Prince William gives her a sniper sight — how romantic. (Don't think so? Obviously you're not a royal.)
Prince William starts training as a search and rescue pilot, and reportedly plans to rent a house for Kate to use when she visits him.
But Kate is rumored to be allergic to horses. Horses and royalty go together like, well, sniper sights and royalty. Will Kate's sneezing fits ruin her romance with the prince?
FEBRUARY: Much discussion of Kate and William's plans to live together. Is it a step closer to marriage?
MARCH: Rumors that an engagement will be announced by the end of March. It's not.
William & Kate sneak off on a holiday together. They don't seem to be good at sneaking because the whole world finds out about it.
APRIL: In the absence of much Kate Middleton news, Kate fans and foes search the Internet for info about her. (No, she's not pregnant. Sorry.) Unlikely rumors fly that Kate is desperate to have a baby. (Sorry, she's still not pregnant.)
MAY: Kate and William are photographed together at a polo match! Apparently that horse allergy isn't such a big obstacle to their romance, after all.
Due to royal budget cutbacks, Kate reportedly loses police protection. Rumor now has it that William wants to marry Kate next year. The BBC is said to be making a documentary that will air when the engagement is announced.
JUNE: Kate joins William for a weekend of polo and accompanies Prince William to a wedding. Later in the month they celebrate Prince William's 27th birthday by checking into a hotel together under the names Mr. and Mrs. Smith. More engagement rumors ensue.
JULY: Big news: Kate is invited to a private lunch with the Queen! She attends yet another royal polo match, and finds time for a vacation — without Prince William. Late in the month, the two are photographed kissing in a pub's parking lot.
So, to sum up: Parental meetings; meeting with the Queen; romantic dinners; sniper sight and polo matches; living together, vacationing together (sometimes) and parking lot kissing… My verdict is yes, they will be getting married. Someday. Don't ask me when.
Maybe by December we'll know the answer.
For all the latest news about Kate Middleton, visit The Kate Middleton Report, where it's all Kate, all the time! Except when there's nothing to say about her.