The future couple first met at a polo match in 1970. Camilla had recently broken up with her previous boyfriend, Andrew Parker Bowles, and she and Charles hit it off quickly over shared interests.
Other sources suggest that Camilla met Charles a little later and flirted with him outright at the beginning. People reported in 1992 that, upon their meeting, Camilla joked, «My great-grandmother was the mistress of your great-great-grandfather. I feel we have something in common.» She was right on that count, at least: her great-grandmother Alice Keppel was one of the known mistresses of King Edward VII, Charles’s ancestor.
Either way, the pair enjoyed a relatively low-key romance for a little while until Charles had to leave for his naval career. His absence quickly put the brakes on their fledgling romance, and he didn’t propose before he left.