If you were looking for the Queen during the four days of the Platinum Jubilee, she was everywhere: On masks, tea towels, projected onto Stonehenge, plastered across Buckingham Palace's facade in lights, splashed across every front page, on YouTube and social media adorably taking tea with Paddington Bear and even waving from the golden Imperial State Coach via a nifty hologram.
But in the flesh? For a woman who famously said, "I have to be seen to be believed"? The person who is widely held to have met more people than any other human being, ever?
Her Majesty was very much AWOL.
In fact, with the bunting coming down and the carriage horses safely tucked up back in the Royal Mews, if you tot up her three short turns on the Palace balcony and her appearance in the Windsor Castle quadrangle to light a Jubilee beacon on Thursday night, Her Majesty appeared in public for the grand total of 27 minutes during the entire Jubilee.
The bleak reality is that despite the 10,000-plus participants, the $40 million plus bill and the fact that her royal apostate grandson and granddaughter-in-law Harry and Meghan, Duke and Duchess of Sussex jetted in for the grand event, we saw the Queen for less than half an hour.
I would be so happy at this point to be able to say the reason was because, in a fit of wonderful obstinacy, she refused to leave her sofa because she wanted to catch up on Succession or that after 70 years in the job she had simply had enough of the waving game and wanted nothing more than to do her Sudoku in peace with a large gin.
But we all know that's sadly not true.
After a lifetime of indefatigable service and politely enquiring "And what do you do?" approximately 2,349,859 times, age has very much caught up with the 96-year-old whose increasing frailty is all too apparent.
During Trooping the Colour on Thursday, she appeared twice briefly on the Palace balcony, an outing which caused such "discomfort" she was unable to attend the following day's service of thanksgiving at St Paul's.
(On the upside, at least in missing that one she was spared having to sit through the Sussexes' first public face-to-face reunion with Prince Charles and William and Kate, Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, a situation that was about as relaxed as a cold war prisoner swap at Checkpoint Charlie.)
Come Saturday and despite Her Majesty's love for a fine filly above all else, including some might argue her children, she was not at the Derby at Epsom racecourse putting a fiver each way on a couple of sure-things, but back at Windsor, again conserving her strength.
Nor was she at the Party at the Palace on Saturday night or in the audience for the Platinum Pageant on Sunday.
When the Royal Standard was hoisted midway through the pageant though, the jig was up with a final mooted appearance on the balcony alongside Charles and wife Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, the Cambridges and their three children, clearly about to come to pass.
When Her Majesty, dressed in green Stuart Parvin, gingerly and slowly made her way out to greet the masses, it was only for about three minutes.
As she made her way back inside, the inescapable question was: Will we ever see Her Majesty appear on that most iconic of balconies again?
Because while the Jubilee was very much a joyful, rollicking bash and a touching tribute to a woman who is nearly universally adored, it was also an obvious book ending of her reign with an unmistakeable poignancy to proceedings.
Yes, there is every chance (at least I hope so) the sovereign will make it to 101 years old, the age her own mother passed away, but what we have just witnessed this weekend is the end of the age of the second Elizabethan era.
The chances of seeing Her Majesty in public again any time in the near future seem slim unless her health miraculously takes a turn for the better.
Aside from her weekly audience with Prime Minister Boris Johnson (a duty any sane person would be thrilled to palm off) and providing her royal assent to legislation, for all intents and purposes Charles is now the sovereign in all but title.
It was the 73-year-old who took the salute at Trooping the Colour, who presided over the State Opening of Parliament and who since 2013 has represented the crown at Commonwealth Heads of Government meetings.
If one key theme of the Jubilee was celebrating the Queen then the other equally prominent motif was about instilling public confidence in the future of the monarchy.
Time and again we saw the Cambridges and their children. Unlike in the past when tots have only been wheeled out in carefully rationed public doses, this weekend they were everywhere and attended all the same events as their parents aside from the St Paul's service.
Watch the video of the Queen and the other members of the royal family making their way onto the Palace balcony after the pageant and there is a slightly heartbreaking moment when young Prince Louis, 4, goes to wedge himself between his older brother and his Gan-Gan. His father, William, instead puts his hands on his shoulders and guides him to stand near his mother to the side.
Louis might be the son, grandson and great-grandson of the next three kings but as fifth in line to the throne he doesn't count in a purely regal sense.
The tiny prince might be adored by the masses and thoroughly loved by his family but he had no place in the precisely choreographed iconography of the moment.
The Palace quite blatantly wanted to close out the Jubilee with one final image: The Queen surrounded by her heirs. The intended message came across loud and clear: King Charles III, King William V and King George VII are all waiting in the wings, the future of the monarchy certain.
Her Majesty might be looking a bit worse for wear and Harry and Meghan might have bolted for the exits but see! We've got plenty of HRHs who gosh darn love doing this!
(Don't for a moment underestimate the psychic shock that Her Majesty's death, hopefully years from now, will trigger in Britain and the Commonwealth. The Palace is clearly cognisant of this and already starting the very delicate business of trying to smooth the way forward for Charles et al.)
Really, if you look beyond the Paddington Bear bit and the corgi rendered on the night sky using drones, the Jubilee was clearly designed with the clear-eyed, pragmatic purpose of really baking in public confidence in the future of the crown.
Because while they are a family with all the histrionics and pouting lips and simmering resentments that go along with that, the British royal family is also one of the world's oldest continuing institutions.
Ensuring the crown's survival is at the very heart of what they do even when marmalade-loving CGI bears are involved.
Closing out proceedings, the Queen released a personal statement that read, "When it comes to how to mark 70 years as your Queen, there is no guidebook to follow. It really is a first."
"While I may not have attended every event in person, my heart has been with you all."
Ours too Your Majesty. Ours too …
• Daniela Elser is a royal expert and a writer with more than 15 years experience working with a number of Australia's leading media titles.