Maxi and The Queen

Maxi and The Queen
Genre: Picture book
It starts out as just a normal day for Maxi as he looks to pick up camera-snapping tourists from Buckingham Palace. But then the Queen, of all people, flags him down! Her Majesty’s chauffeur is on his hols and she needs a lift. Of course, Maxi is happy to oblige, but little does he know the royal problem that awaits him!
About the Book

So there I was, the Palace gates
(You charge the tourists double rates)
Who was there that I should see?
The Queen – Her Royal Majesty!

She waved her crown to flag me down,
She said, “Can you drop me off in town?
My chauffeur’s off on his vacation,
And One can’t stand the ghastly station!”

“Ma’am, I can take you anywhere,
Just make sure you’ve got the fare!
Sure, I may be pleased to meet ya,
But I’ve gotta put ya on the meter!”

We stopped outside a big pet shop,
(Not really somewhere I should stop!).
I said, “Look Ma’am, you may be regal,
But parking here just isn’t legal!”

“The yellow lines we’re on are double,
They could land me deep in trouble!”
She said, “Don’t fret, I’ll waive your fines,
Now park upon the yellow lines.”

An hour went by but still I waited,
The queue behind me escalated.
I could hear the drivers moan,
That I’d stopped in a ‘no park’ zone!

Just then a warden banged my door,
I said, “Oi Guvnor! What’s the score?!”
He said, “You can’t be parking here!
Go on, move it, disappear!”

“Hang on Guv, I’d love to shift,
But I’ve gotta give someone a lift!”
“I don’t care if the Queen’s your fare,
MOVE IT NOW! You can’t park there!”

“It is the Queen, she‘s gone inside…
…that pet shop there and I’m her ride!”
“Of course you are, now move along,
You can’t park here, you’re in the wrong!”

I lost my rag, told him to stick it!
He snapped, “That’s it, you’re for a ticket!
You can’t just sit and block the road,
I’ll call the truck to have you towed!”

And so I gave my horn a blast.
Her Royal Highness showed at last
– a corgi tucked beneath her arm –
“I’m blinkin’ glad to see you Ma’am!”

“Where the blazes have you been?
He’s slapped a ticket on me ‘screen!
Still, now you’re here, at last you’ve showed,
This jobsworth’s trying to ‘ave me towed!

The warden blinked and rubbed his eyes,
“I thought the Cab was telling lies!
I could’ve sworn that he was lying…
…about you being in there buying!”

“Well he wasn’t, as you’ve seen.
So remove that ticket!” raged the Queen.
“Of course Your Highness, straight away,
And of course there’ll be no fine to pay!”

“And I’m sorry for my disbelief,
Please don’t go and tell my Chief.”
“You’re lucky you’re not for the sack!”
The Queen said, diving in the back.

I asked the Queen, “Why the delay?”
She said, “I had no way to pay!
Every credit card I used,
Were at their max and all refused!”

“But through One’s years of loyalty,
And mainly as One’s Royalty,
They let me put it on the slate,
And pay them at a later date.”

I said, “That’s great, you must be proud,
But in my cab, dogs ain’t allowed!”
“Alright,” she said, “I’ll have you knighted.”
I said, “What me?! I’d be delighted!”

‘Just think’, I thought, ‘Arise, Sir Maxi’,
A gallant cab and knighted taxi!
“You’ve got a deal, bring the mutt,
But make sure that you keep him shut!”

“I’m in no mood for yaps and barking,
My head’s still poundin’ from that parking!”
But hats off to the that little hound,
He didn’t make another sound.

As we approached the Queen’s abode,
“Can you drop us down the road?”
The Queen called out from in the rear;
“One wants to walk the dog from here.”

But when we stopped it just got worse,
As her Highness checked her purse:
“It’s quite bizarre, it’s really strange,
One’s left Buck House without One’s change”

“Look Ma’am, don’t worry ‘bout the debt,
Just go and tend your canine pet!
And next time that you lack a chauffeur,
Stay at home upon your sofa!”

“Just do your shopping on the ‘Net,
And see what special deals you get.
You can find some blindin’ offers,
That won’t eat up the Royal Coffers.”

“Thanks Maxi, One thinks One will,
Especially with my pet shop bill!”
And as I dropped off her and Rover,
My dashboard crackled: “Come in, over.”

It was C.B., back at Base.
(She guides the cabs from place to place.)
“Come in Maxi, where’ve you been?”
So I told her…“With the Queen!”

“Oh no,” she said, “Her Majesty?!
She always gets her fares for free!
Please tell me that this time she paid?”
I said, “She didn’t, I’m afraid!”

“Not to fret,” C.B. replied.
Sounds like she took YOU for a ride!
Oh well,” she said, “no time to stop.
I’ve booked you in another drop.”

“No problem C.B., on my way,
And I promise that this fare will pay.
And I’ll tell you something else for free:
I won’t stop if they’re Royalty!”

Journey over – until next time!