What! I nearly choked on my cornflakes this morning when I heard on the news that President Sarkozy's much publicised state visit to Britain starts this morning when he FLIES INTO HEATHROW!!!!!
It simply never occured to me that the only head of state in the world who can travel directly* to this country by rail, would not do so.
(*Even King Albert of Belgium would have to momentarily pass through France with any diplomatic/security/protocol issues that might raise)
The environment is THE number one policy issue for both the transport industry and the world of politics (and everyone else). So why wouldn't President Sarkozy get on Eurostar, travel through the greatest - if not latest - symbol of Anglo-French co-operation and arrive at our shiny new St Pancras International via our new high-speed track?
What kind of message is that?
Maybe he'll travel back by train.....but who cares? How many newspapers, here, in France, and around the world, will carrying pictures and stories of him leaving, compared to those covering his arrival?
Just what exactly goes on in that space between the ears of palace officials, royal aides and government protocol droids?? What were they thinking when they planned this?
"Zut alors! Let them eat carbon!"