DIPLOMATIC OVER-TOURS : English Prime Minister BORIS JOHNSON is said to have been left fuming during the first day of his trip north of the wall to win over the hearts and minds of Scots.
The trip is seen as key to retaining England’s place in the Union when the Celtic nations secede and federate to escape the food shortages and international irrelevance to come with Brexit in 2021.
The drama today appears to centre around the gift he personally selected for Scottish independence leader, Nicola Sturgeon, and what happened to it.
“It was shortly before 6am this morning when Mr Johnson’s private train, dubbed by Mr Johnson the Hardian’s Express, pulled into Stirling station on the first stop of his whirlwind tour of Caledonia,” LCD Views’ foreign correspondent reports, “Mr Johnson is said to have turned out pretty well, all things considered, having decided not to go to bed the night before. Instead he spent the journey north drinking solidly with friends in order to hit Sturgeon with his chummiest bon homie.”
But it doesn’t appear to be his standard alcoholic shambles that did the damage, rather the gift he had hand picked to win over the frosty Scottish lass.
“Nicole didn’t like it one bit,” a Downing Street courtier travelling with Mr Johnson’s party told LCD Views, “a bit baffling all round. Every leader needs a good fridge to hide in when the wicket gets sticky.”
But not Ms Stugeon it seems, at least not when faced with Mr Johnson.
“It all seemed to be going well enough. Mr Johnson opened the doors to the walk-in fridge he’s had installed on the Hadrian Express, waved regally enough to Nicole and then hopped down like an excited school boy. He was very keen to give her his gift.”
But as a crane lifted the giant, boxed fridge, off the train the atmosphere turned positively chilly.
“Well it may have been a mistake to allow old Grayling to operate the train, in spite of his confidence.”
The box is said to have slipped its moorings, much like Mr Johnson’s diplomatic effort, and crashed to the train platform.
“Some of the box shattered and the gift was visible. Maybe it was the Saint George flag colour scheme? Maybe it was the fact the fridge was packed with smoked salmon? Who can say. I personally was in favour of offering little Nicole the title of Duchess of Ashford. Try and win her around the traditional way. Lands and titles in England. But Dom was certain she’d go for the fridge. Let her feel like an equal, even if the fridge was noticeably smaller than Johnson’s and not fitted to rolling stock.”
Whatever the reason it was with a cool and determined manner that Ms Sturgeon helped several of her guard push the fridge out of the station and onto Stirling Bridge.
“Then she took up a giant piece of lumber and just heaved the whole thing over the edge of the bridge. It’s still there right now, far as I know. Can’t be good for shipping.”
It’s not clear how Mr Johnson took the rebuff though as he immediately hid inside his own fridge.
The dust is still settling on the incident but English headline writers have been quick to point out the failings in Ms Sturgeon’s actions.
“She should have turfed it into the Firth of Forth,” one told us, “that way we could have written The Fridge of Forth! Now we’re just left wondering if Fridgeheart or the Battle of Stirling Bridge part 2 is good enough?”