President Sarkozy's new wife, Carla Bruni, says she knew she wanted to marry the French premier from their very first meeting last November. "Between Nicolas and me, it wasn't quick, it was immediate," she revealed, adding: "For us, it even seemed slow. But lovers have their own sense of time."
Speaking in the French news magazine L'Express, the Italian-born former model explained: "It seems that with him, nothing bad can happen". She goes on to say: "With him, an anxiousness that I've felt since childhood disappears. So I am the First Lady until the end of my husband's mandate, and his wife until death."
The couple, who wed after a nine-week courtship, divide their time between her home in Paris and the Elyseés Palace's presidential apartments, where Carla, who's now pursuing a singing career, is working on her third album.
Conscious of reports circulating about her colourful love life in the past, Mr Sarkozy's bride was also at pains to reassure the French public she takes her new position seriously.
"I am normal, serious, conscientious, simple - even if I come from a privileged background," says Carla, who will make her first official trip in her new role when she travels to the UK with Mr Sarkozy on March 26.