No, not between people. Between towns. What happens when a partner never calls, won’t respond to overtures and displays complete apathy toward its tinned town?
Well, nothing, actually. The European Union bureaucracy in charge of partnering towns together has no way of divorcing twinned towns that are not getting along.
When Wallingford and Luxeuil-les-Nains became twin towns 30 years ago, they hoped to form a trans-European bond and share each other’s cultures.
Now, Alec Hayton, the mayor of Wallingford, has sought to end the relationship after repeated attempts to contact civic leaders across the Channel fell on deaf ears.
But the Brussels-based Council for European Municipalities and Regions, which co-ordinates the schemes in Europe, has told him it does not have the authority to “de-twin” towns.
Mr Hayton said: “They were not interested in sorting out the problem. They said they did not have the forms and it was not their job to de-twin towns. They did not think anyone had asked that before.”
The problem of “Town Marriage” gone bad will doubtless inspire a whole new field of “International Law”. We simply cannot wait for these decisions to be handed down.