The profaning prince
Without question the best and most incredible story I’ve ever heard can, I think, be brought to a wider audience. The story’s main character, Gordon of Abergeldie, passed away late last year. It’s probably now safe to give the story an airing.
I recount it as I heard it some years back, so it may not be verbatim. The main thrust of the tale, though, is true — including the killer punchlines.
A number of years ago, some evening or other, Jenny and Adam Watson’s phone rang. Adam picked up the receiver and was met by a very plummy voice asking to speak to ‘Mrs Watson’.
‘Certainly, may I ask who’s calling?’
‘Yes, it’s Charles, Prince of Wales.’
Holding the phone to his chest, Adam whispered, ‘Jenny, I think Prince Charles is on the phone for you,’
‘What?’ replied Jenny.
‘It certainly sounds like it could be him,’ said Adam.
And, sure enough, it was. HRH was vexed about some local issue and wished to discuss it with Jenny, a councilor at that time. After a brief conversation the prince invited Jenny and Adam to tea on the Balmoral estate so they could continue the discussion in a bit more length.
(Alas I cannot now remember what the specific issue was that they wished to discuss, but it doesn’t really affect the story.)
Some days later Jenny and Adam duly arrived at what must have been Birkhall, on the Balmoral Estate, and met with Charles to discuss the issue that was weighing on his mind. After a period of time, when he was satisfied he’d got up to speed with the relevant information from Jenny, he changed tack to discuss something else that was on his mind.
‘Do you know Gordon of Abergeldie?’ asked Charles.
Those unfamiliar with the machinations of Deeside aristocracy would be forgiven for not knowing that there has been, apparently, bad blood between the Gordons of Abergeldie and the royal family right from the time of Queen Victoria. Why this should be I’ve no idea, but seemingly the rift does — did — run deep. The Gordons have held Abergeldie for centuries.
‘Yes,’ said Adam. ‘I know him well enough.’
‘I’ve simply tried everything to welcome him; to be a friendly neighbour. But he just won’t have it,’ said Charles. ‘I’ve invited him to tea, even, but nothing.’
Adam and Jenny were unable to proffer any advice to the prince on the specific subject of how he might ingratiate himself to his Abergeldie neighbour. With a shrug of the shoulders Charles recounted an astonishing recent episode where he’d had an altercation with Gordon.
‘I was sitting just on Gordon’s side of the estate boundary, in an isolated corner, with my easel, painting the scene in the background,’ relayed the prince. ‘Just as I was halfway through, I heard and then saw a jeep tearing down the track towards me.
‘As the jeep drew nearer I could see it was Gordon, and he didn’t look happy,’ stated the Prince. He continued.
‘The vehicle slammed on its brakes and out came a purple-faced Gordon. “WINDSOR,” he shrieked, “take your paints and FUCK OFF MY LAND”’.
Adam and Jenny sat agog as the prince openly swore in front of them, recounting the story.
‘So, what did you do?’ replied Adam, regaining his composure.
A semi-puzzled prince Charles looked back at the couple.
‘I fucked off, of course.’