January 04, 1999 12:00 AM

Life with Princess Diana at Kensington Palace was an emotional roller coaster, with much laughter as well as misery, her longtime butler Paul Burrell has told Britain’s Daily Mail (which begins serializing his book, “Entertaining with Style,” this week). “There were terrific highs and terrific lows . . . But she was never unbalanced and never a monster,” Burrell insisted. “The princess was a very vocal and energetic person, and she didn’t take things lying down.” Burrell, a confidant whom Diana called her “rock,” had previously declined to reveal any private information about the princess following her death in 1997. Yet his comments, as published in the Mail, are surprisingly revealing:

  • “The princess demanded perfection — and only the best would do. When she shouted, you’d go away with your tail between your legs and think about it. There’s only one boss in a situation, and she was the boss.”
  • In the months before Diana and Prince Charles separated in 1992, “the princess suffered a lot in silence. There were the most terrible lows.”
  • Charles “is a good man, but no one can understand the complexities of a relationship.”

  • Dodi Fayed, the man who died with Diana in the Paris car crash, was “a very kind, generous, attentive young man, but whether or not they were going to get married, that’s another thing. I have no knowledge of any plans.” (Fayed’s father, Mohamed Al Fayed, has said repeatedly that the two had planned to marry.)
  • Burrell said he met Diana when she was 19 and a guest at Balmoral Castle in Scotland, where he worked for Queen Elizabeth II. Diana was lost in the corridors and he helped her find her room, said the Mail.

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