Even given the present tension between Prince Harry, his wife Meghan Markle and many members of the British Royal Family, The Duke of Sussex said the couple recently took the time to visit his grandmother Queen Elizabeth II ahead of her 96th birthday. He told Today it was “so nice to see her,” and that “she’s on great form.”

Prince Harry had a moment to talk to Hoda Kotb in The Netherlands while he was participating in the Invictus Games, which he founded in 2014 to honor injured veterans. When the conversation moved to his Royal grandmother, he said he and Markle got tea with the Queen during his visit and added sweetly, “She’s always got a great sense of humor with me and I’m just making sure that she’s protected and got the right people around her.”

He mentioned he “hadn’t had a chance” to visit his home country apart from only two occasions in past years: his grandfather Prince Phillip’s funeral, and the unveiling of a statue depicting his mother Princess Diana. Despite the infrequent visits and reported rifts in his relationship with some family members including his brother Prince William, he seemed satisfied to conclude that “home for me now, for the time being, is in the States.” Harry and Meghan now live in Santa Barbara, California and he said “We’ve got such a great community.”

Prince Harry does not seem to be regretting his and Markle’s decision to step away from their responsibilities as senior royals, but also mentioned frustration over “security issues” he has dealt with in the past when asked if he would be attending the Queen’s birthday jubilee ceremony. He said, “This is what I’m trying to do, trying to make it possible so I can get my kids to meet her.”

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