A travel moment in Paris

Last month I was at Kings Cross St. Pancras train station and I was going through the security procedure of getting scanned and X-rayed, before boarding the Euro-Star to Paris, when I had the pleasure of meeting the biggest idiot alive…

… this chap, dressed as if he was traveling to Africa to oversee the construction of a new railway, was remonstrating with the security staff for emptying his suitcase because they didn’t like what they could see on the x-ray monitor.

Sentences such as “this is ridiculous” and “you haven’t heard the last of this” were pouring from the mouth of this ‘fruitcake’ of an Englishman who clearly thought that Britannia still ruled the waves and that English gentlemen should never be subjected to any sort scrutiny.

When the French security officer pulled from the gentleman’s bag, a florally decorated dress making gift set, containing a large Stanley knife and a giant pair of scissors, he immediately remarked: “Good god man, they’ve got flowers on! These items are clearly for dress making, how can you say they are dangerous?!”

Before the security guard had a chance to speak, our hero had pulled his business card from his wallet and he said in a loud voice: “You see that your managing director gets this! You haven’t heard the last of this! Do you hear me?!”

Now, I was paying particularly close attention to this entertaining fracas and I caught a glimpse of the business card which I fully expected to show a Ministry of Defence logo or some such organization with a bit of clout, but no, the card read ‘Imperial Biscuits – Regional Manager’. (real name of biscuit company withheld - OK, it was UNITED BISCUITS)

Then came a threat that must have left the French Security quaking in his luminous tabard: “We’ll be back, you hear? We’ll be back and we-are-going-to-tear-this-place-apart!!!”

Yes, Imperial Biscuits are going to storm down to Kings Cross station and they are going to tear the place apart, then maybe give it a nice custard filling?!

And the reason I am telling you this? Well, such was the length of the wait caused by Captain Biscuit (we missed our allocated train because of him) that we decided to abort our plans to go to Paris for the weekend and we went straight home to pick up the caravan and off we totted to the New Forest where we ate broken biscuits and toasted with mugs of tea the idiosyncrasies of the British – idiots and all.

P Green

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