Here’s a bit of fun from Holmfirth Writer’s Group yesterday evening. The starting point for our writing was a piece of paper on which were posted a selection of twenty-odd newspaper headlines. One of these was “Mexico. The nightmare has begun.” This felt like a bit of a gift, in the aftermath of the Trump inauguration. So fast forward a few years, to a time when a new Mexican president is having to deal with the fallout of Mr Trump’s obsession with their mutual border ….
The President could tell from the look on her private secretary’s face that it was not good news.
“What is it this time, Gomez? Let me guess. Now, it wouldn’t happen to be President Trump, by any chance, would it?”
The private secretary nodded. “We have new information from our intelligence services about his latest plans for the border.”
“Oh for God’s sake. Isn’t he satisfied with his bloody wall by now?” After three years and eight trillion dollars, the border wall was now 2000 miles long and 400 feet high, and was patrolled by three quarters of the US Army. It was equipped every 200 yards with machine guns, artillery and PA speakers playing country and western music, to deter new immigrants; and large catapults for repatriating old ones. It could be seen from Mars and had a permanent effect on global weather.
“It’s not the wall this time, Presidente. Apparently, he’s no longer satisfied that a wall is adequate to keep us Mexicans out. No, he’s decided to dig a ditch.”
“A ditch, eh? Well, that doesn’t sound too bad. Though I don’t see what difference it’s going to make. I mean, if someone is prepared to climb over 400 feet of concrete and face the guns of the US Army, I don’t see how a ditch is going to put them off.
“Well, Presidente, ‘ditch’ may be something of an understatement.”
“So. A trench, then? A moat?”
“More of a man-made geological fault. As I understand it, the intention is to fracture the North American tectonic plate at the line of the border, so that continental drift will cause Mexico to move one way and the USA and Canada the other.”
“The man is insane! Quite apart from the absurdity of it, how is it even possible? Making a humungous great crack in the earth’s crust is a bit beyond the average bulldozer.”
“Ah, but Mr Trump thinks he has a solution. Our intelligence sources tell us that Mr Putin has told him he has to get rid of his nuclear weapons, or else certain compromising images will turn up on Instagram. So Trump has decided to dig deep holes for them along the line of the border and set them all off, killing two birds with one stone, as it were. Look on the bright side, Presidente. At least he’s not asking us to pay for it this time.”
“I don’t believe it. It’s just another one of his megalomaniac fantasies. I’m surprised at you, Gomez. You can’t take this stuff seriously.”
But a few weeks later, residents of the Mexican city of Tijuana awoke to a loud bang and an earthquake. They scrambled from the ruins of their houses to find that a finger of sea had appeared between their city and San Diego, California. As a series of similar bangs unzipped the continent, the Trump Sea came into existence, the wall suddenly became redundant and the US Army went home. And as the Panama Canal went out of business, the residents of that newly impoverished country set out in boats in their tens of thousands, seeking a new life in the country that was the source of their misery.