Celebrations in Belgium
What would be a humiliation for many turned into a party for Belgium yesterday as the country's citizens marked 249 days without a government, a figure that they are treating as a world record in political prevarication.
On every other day, the crisis pits the leaders of six million Dutch-speakers against those of four and a half million French speakers, but people from across the country put aside their differences to celebrate the occasion.
In Dutch-speaking Ghent, some people stripped down to their underwear in protest at the situation. In Leuven, a long line of students snaked through the central square for a free portion of frites, Belgium's beloved national dish.
Acting prime minister Yves Leterme cautioned not to make too much of the day. "Don't overestimate the impact on politicians and decision-makers."
Free chips, naked protestors and grumpy politicians concerned that politicians are being inconvenienced in making up policy - what's not to like?