Monday 27 July 2009

Dissident Cobblers

Ominous changes are afoot in the capital of Europe! Here in Belgium, if you buy a car and don't already possess the pair of licence plates that will remain yours for life, the local vehicle registration office will normally issue you with your first licence plate (the rear one, as it happens) by sending it to you through the post. You then have to visit a cobbler and buy the front plate yourself. Apparently, this business represents about 15 percent of Belgian cobblers' overall turnover. It may not have made the world news headlines, but, shockingly, it seems that the days of this time-honoured tradition may be numbered: According to a recent news report, Belgian cobblers are "in uproar about a proposed reform of the way licence plates are issued". Under the proposed reform, "new EU-style licence plates issued from July 2010 would be sent out in pairs" by the licensing authority (emphasis mine). It just so happens that I neither own nor drive a car. But this news does prompt me to ask: What next? Will holding the number of the Beast soon become a punishable offence in the new Europe? Now, that really would be an unexpected turn of events, wouldn't it? I don't think it's likely to happen. But, then again, I've been wrong before.


xHWA said...

I'm still glad we're acquainted. I love the way you think.

The Third Witness said...

Hello xHWA!
Great to hear from you, and thanks for your encouraging words.