I normally write in this column about the major political issues of the day, but nothing better encapsulates what’s wrong with the European Union than the curious incident of the sofa in my office.
On July 1, the new MEPs took up our seats and we were shown to our shiny new offices. Everything is luxurious, but utterly grey and soulless: just like the European Union itself.
Each office comes with a wooden unit with drawers, wardrobes and a fold-out sofa built in.
I arrived in my Brussels office, only to find that someone had screwed the sofa shut. Not having a screwdriver of the right size handy, not wanting to risk taking a screwdriver from the UK in case of awkward questions at customs, and thinking it was a straightforward task, I asked for the Parliament’s furniture services to simply come and remove the screw.
“Remove the screw?” I was told, in horror. “But you are a député. You must have a new sofa!” My protests about waste fell on deaf ears.
You can read the rest of this article in my Journal column here.