The Italian Almanac

Berlusconi and Merkel


Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi hid behind a lamp post to surprise German Chancellor Angela Merkel when she arrived for an Italo-German summit in Trieste. The fun-loving Italian premier spotted Merkel coming and sneaked behind a guard of honour to lay in wait before stepping out to say 'Peekaboo'.

The chancellor spread her arms wide in amusement, saying ''Oh, Silvio,'' before the pair embraced warmly. Berlusconi is known for injecting a jocular spirit into formal gatherings - like the time he was caught making the horned good luck or 'cuckold' sign during a European Union photo.