Foot on table: British PM at home in French president palace

Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson (R) places his foot on the table during a meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron (L) at the Elysee Palace in Paris, France, on August 22, 2019. - British Prime Minister is visiting Paris, a day after Berlin offered a glimmer of hope that an agreement could be reached to avoid a chaotic "no deal" Brexit. On the second leg of his first foreign visit since taking office, he will meet the French President at the Elysee palace to press home his message that elements of the UK's impending divorce from the European Union must be renegotiated. (Photo by Christophe PETIT TESSON / POOL / AFP)

PARIS — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson apparently wasn’t sweating it despite the high stakes subject of his talks with the president of France: Brexit.

So relaxed was he during his Thursday visit to Paris that he sat deep in an upholstered chair in an Elysee Palace salon — and briefly put his foot on a coffee table.

President Emmanuel Macron, facing his guest from a chair on the other side of the small round table, appeared to make his guest feel at home.

Macron modernized the palace furniture after his 2017 election, casting off formality for high-toned comfort and a more relaxed style.

The two men joked, with Macron slapping his hand on the table. Johnson put his foot on it, while Macron pointed to the floor — where feet belong. Boris then said “sorry” with a wave and laugh.

The informal posture of the two, acting like clowning chums despite differences over Britain’s expected fall departure from the EU, may be the new normal in the often-tense world of diplomacy. After all, Macron squeezed the thigh of President Donald Trump during a meeting in Paris in November.

The Elysee later called Thursday’s encounter “complete” and “constructive.”

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