This is an article we found on The Telegraph covering Merkel's diet, the EU theme tune, 'Ode to Joy' and Didier Reynders, the Belgian Minister of Finance, who apparently left early to attend the world premiere of the new Tintin film, The Secret of the Unicorn.
Just when the eurozone governments thought it could not get worse for Europe's single currency, it did.
Shell-shocked EU finance ministers meeting in Brussels on Saturday were already reeling from the worst Franco-German rift for over 20 years and a fractious failure to resolve the problems that have brought Greece, and the euro, close to the brink.
But then a new bombshell hit as a joint report by the EU and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) warned that, without a default, the Greek debt crisis alone could swallow the eurozone's entire €440 billion bailout fund - leaving nothing to spare to help the affected banks of Italy, Spain or France.
An EU already rocked by divisions between France and Germany over how to increase the "firepower" of the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) in order to save the wider eurozone from Greek contagion now faced the prospect of losing it all in one go.
As dark-suited finance ministers contemplated the pains au chocolat laid out on their desks alongside their talking points and position papers, Jan Kees de Jager, the Dutch finance minister, told colleagues: "We've got to get real. People are talking about new defences but with one gulp the whole €440 billion could be gone, leaving the eurozone with no protection at all."
Compounding the trauma, Christine Lagarde, the French finance minister turned IMF chief - and one of the few key players who appeared to be enjoying herself in her new headmistress-like role - issued a grim warning to her former European peers.
The IMF would no longer be willing to pick up a third of the total bill for rescuing Greece, a contribution worth €73 billion, unless European banks were prepared to write off 50 per cent of Greek debt.
"It was grim. The worst mood I have ever seen, a complete mess," said one eurozone finance minister.
In a change to the normal euro summit venue in the pink marble clad Justus Lipsius building, finance ministers were meeting next door to allow security staff to carry out a 24 hour security sweep before Europe's leaders arrive on Sunday.
The relocation to an administrative block, the Lex building, added to the flat and leaden atmosphere as ministers trooped into neon strip-lighted, brown carpeted office space without natural sunlight.
Outside the security cordon on the other side of the road to the building's entrance on Avenue Livingstone, anarchist graffiti on a wall proclaimed in French: "After Greece, Belgium, the insurrection is coming."
There were already moments of near insurrection inside, however. The Joint IMF and EU report gave the eurozone's haircut hawks - those, led by Germany, who want the banks to accept a bigger loss on some of the money loaned to Freece - the opportunity to give "a bloody hiding" to both France and the European Central Bank. Both have been resisting any talk of a Greek debt default for fear it would damage French banks and rock the stability of financial institutions.
According to insiders, Wolfgang Schaeuble, Germany's finance minister, could not resist taking an "I told you so" approach - he had been, after all, the first to call for an "orderly" default for Greece 18 months ago, at a time when the cost of such a move was less than one third of the price today.
"Schaeuble is a man who does not mince his words, whose reputation for harshness and arrogance is well earned. He was, frankly, unbearable," said one diplomat.
Francois Baroin, the young and inexperienced French finance minister, attempted to hit back, complaining that the IMF's default medicine would hit France the hardest; the country's banks are highly exposed and could threaten its "untouchable" AAA rating.
But Mrs Lagarde, who had held his post until taking up the IMF job this summer, "shut him up" by brandishing the report and pointing to it its detailed figures. "She really slapped him down - and in perfect English too, a language he cannot speak," said a diplomat.
It is an odd fact that eurozone meetings are generally conducted in English, the language of international finance, and that Mrs Lagarde enjoys using it. It seems to have added to the relish with which she conducted herself yesterday, coolly enjoying what insiders observed was her first opportunity to engage in political and intellectual combat with her French - and other - colleagues.
Interpersonal relations between eurozone leaders have hit an all-time low, reflecting sharp disagreements between Germany and France over using the ECB to bailout the euro and presenting an additional obstacle to finding a "grand solution" to Europe's debt crisis.
Nicolas Sarkozy's "two faced" personality has been cited as a major factor in his dysfunctional relationship with Angela Merkel.
During one-to-one, face-to-face meetings with the German Chancellor, the French President is said to be "syrupy", "ladling on the charm", but when her back is turned or she leaves the room, Mr Sarkozy changes tack.
Chancellor Merkel is said to have been deeply wounded by one anecdote that Mr Sarkozy is said to have told another head of government about her.
"She says she is on a diet and then helps herself to a second helping of cheese," the French president allegedly said after a dinner meeting with Mrs Merkel.
Such cattiness will not have been forgotten by Mrs Merkel when she sat down to dine with Mr Sarkozy last night in an encounter billed as a "make or break" moment to save the euro by patching up Franco-German relations.
A row between the pair in Frankfurt on Wednesday overshadowed leaving-do celebrations to mark the end of Jean-Claude Trichet's nine years as the head of the ECB.
"Their shouting could be heard down the corridor in the concert hall where an orchestra was about to play the EU's anthem, Ode to Joy," said an incredulous EU official.
Finance ministers - including George Osborne, the Chancellor - expressed frustration on Saturday that their emergency meeting could take no decisions of substance until Mrs Merkel and Mr Sarkozy had buried the hatchet.
"This Ecofin meeting has been reduced to an academic seminar, an exercise with absolutely no purpose," complained one finance minister.
So pointless was the gathering, that Didier Reynders, the Belgian finance minister, left early to attend the world premiere of the new Tintin film, The Secret of the Unicorn.
Mr Reynders will be presenting Steven Spielberg, the film's director, with the royal insignia of a "Commander of the Order of the Crown".
As well as the breakdown of the Franco-German motor, the EU is facing a rebellion from Italy, Spain and others over "imperious diktats" issuing from Paris or Berlin.
And to cap it all, as The Sunday Telegraph can now reveal, Herman Van Rompuy, the EU president who is regarded by many as too close to Berlin, angered many countries when he made confidential proposals for the creation of a European finance ministry.
His plan, which has considerable backing from the growing body of EU bureaucrats who see a unified EU treasury as the only solution to the problem of countries spending more than the euro can stand, would mean a centralised body able to override national budgets and enforce cuts on profligate governments.
Anything like it would be the most radical step in the history of the European Union, going further than any vision of the founding fathers who drew the line at giving away fiscal and military sovereignty.
"People were furious," said one diplomat from a small eurozone country. "It is bad enough that these ideas are all dreamt up by German or French officials. Even worse, Van Rompuy had the arrogance to suggest that the EU finance ministry should be based in either Frankfurt or Paris."
As talks dragged through Saturday to satisfy Italian and Spanish concerns over "arcane drafting language", a frustrated George Osborne, the Chancellor missed his flight back to Manchester, the closest airport to his Tatton constituency.
Jean-Claude Juncker, the prime minister of Luxembourg and chairman of the eurogroup of finance ministers, joined journalists outside the security cordon of the EU summit venue for a cigarette. He has been forbidden to smoke inside by Mr Van Rompuy. "I needed a break," he said. "I have no idea how long all this is going to take."
All a tad stressfull.
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