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Of all the nations that live side-by-side in harmony, it's difficult to imagine two that are much more peaceful than Sweden and Norway. But, that having been said, the royal palace in Stockholm admitted late last week to an international incident that just possibly could have strained relations . And at the center were none other than King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia. Goodness, what happened? Well, to put it bluntly, an alleged theft of services: They reportedly sped away from a filling station in north-central Norway without paying for a tank of gasoline. It seems the couple maintain a vacation home across the border in the ruggedly beautiful Tr√łndelag region, to which they usually go for some relaxation at Easter. Only, this time they decided to break up the long ride back home by stopping for a fill-up and refreshments. Alas, the couple's chauffeur paid only for the refreshments, returned to the vehicle, and drove off without, as a royal spokeswoman put it, "thinking separately" about the fuel he'd pumped. The station owner had to - ahem - track them down and contact the royal palace to get his money. But now payment has been sent, the spokeswoman said. The whole thing, she maintained, "was really a mistake."

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