The elderly enjoy reading about famous personalities such as for example Margaret Thatcher. The article has recently appeared in the news and points out why Thatcher refused to fly with a panda.
Maybe Margaret Thatcher did not believe in panda diplomacy. The former British Prime Minister refused to share a flight to Washington with a giant panda on an official visit.
In 1981, the president of the London Zoological Society, Lord Zuckerman, asked if Thatcher would take a male panda named Chia-Chia to the United States on her Concorde flight. The US wanted to borrow the male panda so that he could mate with its female panda.
Lord Zuckerman said it was a way to demonstrate the special relationship between the two countries. But Thatcher was not impressed. “I am not taking a panda with me”, she wrote in blue pen on the document.
“Pandas and politicians are not happy omens!” she wrote.
Thatcher suggested another arrangement: Chia-Chia travels on a separate plane. The male panda stayed in the US for three months, but sadly the mating was not successful.
Source: CNN [online] / http://edition.cnn.com/2017/12/29/europe/margaret-thatcher-uk-us-panda/index.html
Adapted by: Jodie Hruby, UK/USA