Friday, 31 December 2010

dear mr charles lotter and even dearer ms julia record
even in france - no new contact was made!

HAPPY NEW YEAR! no wait ... that's tomorrow. Erm - HAPPY NEW YEAR'S EVE! hmm ... that doesn't have a ring to it does it? Basically, happy last day of the year and end to 2010.

I remember watching that Kubrick movie 2010 in the last century (not THAT one - c'mon, I am not THAT old) and strangely enough, nothing from that movie has come vaguely true - space travel wise. How disappointing ...

I have been rather busy today which means that I am generally exhausted and will sleep like a baby tonight ... and definitely will be in bed before midnight.

Anyway, I have visitors including the lovely Julia Record (my ex-PR) and we are going to drink champagne ... just try stopping me! grrrr ...

More tomorrow - obviously - but I hope everyone has a lovely evening ... and remembers everything they did & said in the morning! Ha!

Thursday, 30 December 2010

THANK YOU for all the very kind birthday wishes that I received today. Before the days of Facebook, Linkedin etc, I was lucky to get a dozen cards ... now I get a dozen cards PLUS a couple of hundred messages from friends & family from all over the world. I am a very, VERY lucky boy ... well ... man ... well ... almost pensioner (haha).

I am back at my desk! Yipeee! I have a laptop (PC) ... and from now on, it will go EVERYWHERE with me.

SO - I have had a lovely day with friends & family - eating, drinking, remembering and occasionally making merry. I miss the ones I love - who I can't see/don't see due to geography and other circumstances - and birthdays and this time of year generally tends to bring all these memories out. I must admit to shedding a tear or two today. Hey ho ...

By the way, I was swamped with whisky, cigars and wine as gifts! I am a content birthday boy (man etc)

Tomorrow is New Year's Eve ... my liver needs a holiday.
my wonderful Papa - who has put up with me all these years!
my dearest friend Tim ... we have put up with each other for years!

Wednesday, 29 December 2010

December 29th .... hmmm ....

Still on this "computer" ... and am still having trouble trying to upload photos ... I cannot wait to get home to my PC - although apparently I lack "creativity" as I don't have my very own "Jobsmachine" ...

I have done NOTHING today except write an article on South Africa for a Scandinavian magazine, taken the Pooch for a couple of walks and marvelled at the dense freezing fog that has enveloped the world. I have also been hanging with best buddy Tim and a sofa. He has a home cinema - complete with a 110 inch projector cinema system. I am now going to install one for myself at my own home! I just hope it does not cost too much ...

Tomorrow, I am going to each much cake and treat myself to a large flute of champagne.

Above is light blue fog ... tomorrow, REAL photographs, I promise ....

Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Greetings from Day 1 of my 3 day road trip to see friends and family around the UK.

It's all rather strange as the snow has all melted and I can now see GREEN grass. Not sure that it was last long though as more snow is predicted for New Year's Eve.

I am now in a village called Great Barford in Bedfordshire ... it took me HOURS to get here as the freezing fog made driving conditions pretty awful. Even soothing music from Classic FM did not help.

What's EVEN worse is that I am using an Apple MacBook Pro (???) to write today's diary ... I feel dirty ... Apple ... ugh ...

OK - I have tried to upload a picture ... BUT Apple won't let me (or I haven't a clue how to do it) so enjoy the photo below ... it's of snow ... or a white wall ... or an old man's beard (mine) or a tin of paint ... a blank (white) canvas ... courtesy of ... APPLE!

Monday, 27 December 2010

It is now heaving down with rain! The east coast of the USA is on snowy shutdown, India is suffering from freezing fog, Europe is under severe weather warnings, unseasonal warm weather in Russia ... erm ... global warming anyone?

So, it's now the run-up to New Year and 2011. I will be visiting friends and family -probably drinking more whisky & champagne, eating more leftovers AND you know, have a good cigar ... just one but a REALLY good one ...

the culebra. actually, I am cheating as this is 3 cigars wrapped into one! now, to just find two friends to smoke with ... heehee

Sunday, 26 December 2010

I am exhausted! All this eating, drinking and making merry has made me a bloated wreck!

A question I have been asked a few times today is why/what is Boxing Day -- well --

Boxing Day originated in England in the middle of the nineteenth century under Queen Victoria. December 26th, or Boxing Day is a holiday celebrated in Britain, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and other Commonwealth countries. It is spent with family and friends at open gatherings with lots of food, fun, friendship and love. Boxing Day is so called because it was the custom on that day for tradesmen to collect their Christmas boxes or gifts in return for good and reliable service throughout the year. Boxing Day is also St. Stephen's Day. St Stephen was a little known saint who achieved eternal fame by being the first Christian to be martyred for his faith by being stoned to death shortly after Christ's crucifixion.

The traditional celebration of Boxing Day included giving money and other gifts to charitable institutions, needy individuals, and people in service jobs. The holiday may date from the Middle Ages (A.D. 400's--1500's), but the exact origin is unknown. It may have begun with the lords and ladies of England, who presented Christmas gifts in boxes to their servants on December 26. Or it may have begun with priests, who opened the church's alms (charity) boxes on the day after Christmas and distributed the contents to the poor.

Some say the tradition stems from Roman times when money to pay for athletic games was collected in boxes. Amongst the ruins of Pompeii, boxes made out of earthenware with slits in the top full of coins have been found. Later the Romans brought the idea of collecting boxes to Britain, and monks and clergy soon used similar boxes to collect money for the poor at Christmas. On the day after Christmas, the priests used to open the boxes and distribute the contents to the poor of the village. Thus this day came to be called Boxing Day.

While government buildings and small businesses are closed, the malls are filled with people either exchanging gifts or buying reduced priced Christmas gifts, cards, and decorations. Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing day is classed as the Christmas Season with Boxing day falling on the following Monday if December 26th falls on a Saturday or Sunday.


how i feel ... bloated (& furry!)

Saturday, 25 December 2010


It's been such a LOVELY day here! The sun has shone, the sky has been blue and it's been bitterly cold! BUT it was a white xmas! Whoo-hoo!

The stars tonight are just ... beautiful!

Anyway, I spent the day with one of my dearest friends in the world ... and my pooch ... so life was rather nice. I am now going to have a nightcap and sleep ... zzzzzzzzzzzzzz

with Pooch and Jen
My Xmas trousers (pants) purchased from Boston ... a once a year wear!

Friday, 24 December 2010

'Tis Christmas Eve and it is DEFINITELY going to be a white Xmas here ... as the snow has not melted and it is currently - 8 outside!

I have heating oil, an open fireplace filled with logs, a case full of Moscato, ketchup and pizza! Erm - HAPPY XMAS ME!!!!!!

HAPPY CHRISTMAS everyone! I hope Santa leaves everything you have asked for. I am not actually a Christian BUT I believe! I really want that orange tricycle ... or Blackberry Tablet ... or ... or ...

what it's all about!

Thursday, 23 December 2010

the bear (claire)
the sheep (blue)

And on the second day before Xmas, Blackberry sent me a new phone (why not the Tablet? boohoo) ... and this has meant a wasted few hours shaving my fingers even further to be able to hit the keys. What a pain ... literally ...

Apparently, it hit - 20 last night somewhere in the UK! Poor sheep, that's all I can say! I did see a lovely photo of "blue" sheep ... painted so as to spot them in a white field.

Today I say farewell to one of the nicest (& hardworking) people in PR and indeed life - Claire Blackshaw - aka Claire Bear - who has moved hotels from the Four Seasons, Hampshire to Hong Kong! Hong Kong's gain is my loss ... farewell Bear and see you in Honkers!

Up early tomorrow as I will be buying some heating oil - I joke not! Next year I am going to be in a resort right over Xmas and New Year AND don't try stopping me! I am going to be looked after hand & foot ... (in my dreams, of course!)

Wednesday, 22 December 2010


There were just three days to Christmas and the people of England were in "panic mode"... with just two shopping days left there is still much to buy ... the turkey, last-minute gifts, holly, champagne, mistletoe (!) and a prawn curry for Boxing Day!

My panic is somewhat more desperate ... I am running out of heating oil and the next delivery is at the END of January! Eek!

Anyway - tonight the Istanbul episode is airing! I loved that trip - The Four Seasons (Sultanahmet) and The Ritz-Carlton - Turkish Delight, Topkapi Palace oh ... and the funniest/most painful "spa" treatment of my life ... I won't give it away ... just watch it ... ha!

Anyway - two days of shopping left ... so much to do ... so little time to do it in!

Tuesday, 21 December 2010 yes, you guessed correctly, I was in Boston ... and the photo was taken at the "original" Cheers bar:

“Cheers” was one of America’s most highly rated comedy shows. It premiered in 1982 and ran for eleven years. Although filmed in Los Angeles, “Cheers” was set in Boston. Renamed “Cheers Beacon Hill” in 2002, the pub which was founded in 1969 was originally named the Bull & Finch. It’s open for business and yes – I did partake in a jar or two of the local brew, Samuel Adams … but sadly ... no-one at Cheers ... knew my name …


My favourite television character is Dr. Frasier Crane. His dry wit & sense of humour, his obvious lack of success with the fairer sex, his pomposity and his supposed knowledge of all things refined made every one of the 264 episodes filmed a delight to watch.

Looking back at his life though, I think that arguably one his biggest mistakes was to abandon Boston and relocate to his hometown of Seattle.

My favourite time of year to visit the east coast of the United States in just after Fall (Autumn) and just before winter. So at the beginning of this month I flew into Boston to start – what was – a truly memorable visit.

Boston is the largest city in Massachusetts and is also the state capital. The city was founded on September 17th, 1630 – making it one of the oldest cities in America.
Although originally inhabited by Native Americans, strict Puritanical Christians emigrated to “New” England and named Boston after the English city that is located in the county of Lincolnshire. In the 1770’s, the British Government tried to raise taxes in New England to untenable levels and this led to the American Revolution. Even those who know little about American history will know of the Boston Tea Party and the Battle of Bunker Hill – both events that are synonymous with the Revolution.
Boston is now one of the most prosperous cities in America. With world-renowned educational establishments like Harvard and MIT, newspapers like the Boston Globe and sport franchises like the Bruins (hockey, New England Patriots (Football) and Red Sox (baseball) it is certainly a city that also offers diversity like few others in the USA.

At just over 230 square kilometres in area, Boston is not a large city. Indeed it took me just fifteen minutes in a cab from Logan International Airport to my hotel, the Four Seasons on Boylston – which has views of the Public Garden and Boston Common – the oldest public park in the United States.

After my recent fairly negative visit to Philadelphia I was so excited by this trip to Boston ... and I was not disappointed.

From the “Make Way for Ducklings” bronze statues in the Garden, to taking the Freedom Trail (a four kilometre historical tour of Boston) and not forgetting a walk along the banks of the Charles River – oh - and the shopping on Beacon Hill and the fabulous pizza at Upper Crust in Fenway ... I had three terrific and fully-packed days in the dry chill of Boston.

One thing I did notice on my visit to Boston was that on every street there is a “highlight”. It could be a historic building, cemetery, church or monument, a statue or even just a gas-lamp ... if you don’t keep your wits about you and your eyes open in this city – you will miss something of interest!

What a way to end the Leica year!


Monday, 20 December 2010

Make Way for Ducklings ...
"Where everyone knows your name" ... beer anyone?

I really enjoy writing my Leica blog. Not only do I get to take some lovely photos (with help from Tim & James) but I get to write about some of my favourite travel destinations. I have just so many to visit & write about next year ... but for now - where am I? ... the city, not the bar ... answer tomorrow!

OK - another 10 centimetres of snow today ... but it is melting a little now but it will turn to ice overnight! It will be - 11 tonight. My poor Bert & Ernie (sheep).

I am getting rather worried that Xmas will be postponed or even cancelled ... boohoo ...

Sunday, 19 December 2010

A great photo from Heathrow
In days of old ..

Hmmm ... it seems that the UK has come to a standstill. I am expecting at least another 15 centrimetres of fresh snowy stuff overnight and it is reportedly going to get down to - 10 degrees - my poor sheep! Thankfully Bert & Ernie have warm woolly fleeces.

I know that things are MUCH worse in places like Russia ... but terrible winter weather there is normal ... here it's a bad novelty. How I wish I was somewhere warm and sunny ... Nevis or Bora Bora!

I have done so little today but I am hoping that all the food & wine and internet gifts will arrive this week ... and most importantly my friends from Texas and LA ...

Saturday, 18 December 2010

So - Melbourne went out in the UK last night ... Tasmania next week!

James has been beavering away on our Wikipedia page (please feel free to stop in) ... I get the feeling that it is NOT an easy job.


I have not/cannot move from the house as fresh snow has accumulated and really made it difficult to go anywhere. I have no issue with this as I managed to sleep most of the afternoon and watch movies too! Can I please have six months of this?

My mathematical skills are off-kilter. I am sure by now, by my calculations, there should be 6 metres of snow ... in fact there is more like 75 centimetres ... still ... the world looks nice!

afternoon tea anyone?

Friday, 17 December 2010

me & wee Jimmy ... in the snow! brrrrrr ... my beard is keeping my face warm though!

Firstly - Travel Channel UK tonight - Sky channels 251 and 252 - the new series of Inside Luxury Travel kicks off ... in Melbourne. Airs at 9 pm ... I stay at Chateau Yering and Crown Towers, hot-air balloon over the Yarra Valley, dine with a dingo and take a rather fun flight over the city ... ENJOY!

The snow has been falling all day --- now around 1.5 feet --- snow chains --- AWESOME! James popped round to discuss 2011 ... he wears t-shirts in the cold ... the youth of today!

New hotel opening today - the Shangri-La in Paris. This palace property looks simply stunning! Bon chance mes amis!

The weekend is finally here! Whoo-hoo!!!!

Thursday, 16 December 2010

Many, many years ago - when I was knee-high to a grasshopper - a movie arrived at my local cinema which plugged into the craze of the day ... computing.

Starring (a very youthful looking) Jeff Bridges, TRON had everything. Computers, virtual reality, romance and action ... I LOVED it.

Tonight in New York, IMAX is showing the "new" TRON (Legacy) and I really wish I was there! Instead I am at home with James (camera assistant) watching the "Best of the Muppet Show"! After 30 minutes of Gonzo, Kermit and Fozzie (& the odd whisky) ... I am feeling less sad about not being in NYC!

My Papa is reporting a very liberal smattering of settled snow, South of London ... eek ... if the news is to be believed, it's going to be here for weeks to come!

mnah mnah

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

-- The Tasmania episode of Inside Luxury Travel airs tonight on Travel Channel - Europe at 20:00 hrs CET ... in 17 languages ... I hope you enjoy it! I played golf on one of the oldest courses in the world (Ratho), cuddled a baby orphaned wombat and played with a Tasmanian devil --

There are a whole raft of hotel/resort openings around the world between now and the end of the year AND today it's the turn of the Four Seasons Nevis (Caribbean) ... good luck ... you deserve it!

Freezing fog here and I am expecting centrimetres of snow and well-below zero temperatures from midnight tonight. Thankfully my snow-chains arrived today! Ha! £450.00 well spent ... I hope ...
Nevis ... divine!

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Well, it seems I am a whingey-whiney chap. Today, New York City has had snow flurries and - 10 degrees windchill and in Berlin, several inches of snow and between -3 and - 10! It is positively Summer here in the UK compared to that ... BUT we are expecting more/worse from tomorrow. BUT I have snowchains, tyre socks and cans of deicer to hand ... I will remain mobile!

Tried Xmas shopping today ... returned with very little ... I feel most uninspired this year ... will everyone be content with an extra-large box of Smarties each (I guess no ... except for darling Moo of course ... )?


Monday, 13 December 2010

Travel Channel UK: Friday, 17th December 21.00 hrs

Travel Channel Asia: Tuesday, 21st December 21.00 hrs

Travel Channel Germany: Wednesday 22nd December 20.15 hrs

The show has started airing in Europe in 16 languages ... Wednesday evenings at 20.00hrs ... this week I am "in" Tasmania! And New Zealand is airing the new series on Sundays at 18.30 hrs ... AND in India it's on at 20.00 hrs on a Saturday ... coo ... that's a lot of spread there!

I was asked today what I wanted for Xmas. Well, there's no chance of World Peace or a signed photo of Cathy Dennis (teenage crush! ha!) and I don't want an iPad or anything like that ... so, erm ... what is there? I bought my car some snow-chains today - I hope it is happy when the snow returns this weekend.

I could hardly see out of the windows today - freezing fog has gripped the area. I may have to sit at home tonight with a hot drink and maybe watch some nice holiday show on television ... I wonder what ... ha!

Ah - I am visiting Budapest in January now ... can't wait!

Parliament Building in Winter ...

Sunday, 12 December 2010

It's coming up to 6 pm and it's pitch black outside! It's also rather cold (0 degrees) and there's a faint breeze blowing. Washing my car yesterday was a HUGE mistake as everything froze overnight ... and I mean froze!

So today, I am helping to finish the Culinary Travels script. Last night the series premiered in New Zealand ... the UK gets it on Friday at 9 pm! Oooh aaah! This week I am seeing James (camera assistant) and we will be delivering all the shows by Tuesday evening! I really do need a hobby ...

I still can't believe that it's December and it's nearly the end of the year and 2011 is just around the corner ... I wish humans hibernated ...

Saturday, 11 December 2010

So I was meant to sit on the sofa all day today surrounded by my furballs doing nothing. Things didn't turn out that way as I ended up readying myself for the next bout of wintry weather which is due to hit next week.

I tried to buy "tyre socks" for my car BUT guess what ... my car tyres have no socks for them! Every other blooming car tyre has one - just not mine! Mercedes ... I hate you. I bet a 20 year old Trabant can get tyre socks ...

I bought salt & grit (the council here aren't all that vigilant) and swept the driveway ... c'mon Father Snow - I am ready for you!

this "warship" was sitting just outside Cannes last week ... Father Snow ... I have my backup!

Friday, 10 December 2010

I am listening to Frank Sinatra & Julio Iglesias singing "Summer Wind" and I am thinking that I really need a sunshine holiday!

Gemima is sitting next to me begging for doggie-choc-drops ... and Mittens the Kitten is sitting on my desk/keyboard. I have a VERY furry audience!

It's an unbroken Day 650 of the Daily Diary! Not bad eh,?

I feel like it is the end of term. No more travelling until January! Whoo-hoo! The new series has started airing in Europe (for details: and it's the UK this weekend with the rest of the world from Monday. We have some quite lovely feedback so far ... except from a zoo-keeper from Paris who was rather upset (tongue-in-cheek, I hope) that I had dinner with a dingo (literally) in Melbourne ...

It's quite chilly outside ... these harsh English winters! Brrrr ... I am buying "tyre socks" for my car tomorrow. No skidding on black ice for me!

The weekend is here and I have nothing planned and I am not going to do anything except eat pizza, sleep and watch movies. Almost heaven!

Some of my favourite people from the International Luxury Travel Market in Cannes ...

Raymond Bickson - CEO of Taj Hotels. He was one of my original mentors back in 1999 and we discussed plans for my forthcoming filming visit to India ... and our mutual friend - darling Cookie ...
Captain Nair - the owner of Leela Hotels ... his new New Delhi property looks awesome!
With top PR lady - Jo Vickers and Peter Shaindlin - the top banana at Halekulani - that wonderful property we filmed in Hawaii!
Doug Camp from the Hay-Adams in Washington DC. I walked back to my hotel after dinner ... Doug got a lift in a nifty yellow Ferrari! Some guys have all the luck ...

Thursday, 9 December 2010

Today is hopefully the last "travel" day of the year! I am finally off home to spend Xmas and New Year in the UK with family & friends.

Even though I have ended 2010 in a less-than-wonderful (but still iconic) hotel, Cannes has been very good to me and ILT. I have managed to sort out so much for the next couple of years! Yay! Now - all the follow up work ... grrrrr ...

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Bonjour a Cannes!

I am finally in a South-of-France-State-of-Mind. The weather is still rather dreary & depressing(cold, windy and grey) but I have achieved much today and am feeling quite pleased with myself.

I have caught up with old friends from: Halekulani, Elsyian, The Oyster Box, many Four Seasons, Sonora Resort (ahhhh) & many Ritz-Carltons & Peninsulas AND have sorted out a few hotels/resorts and features for 2011 AND 2012. Phew!

Every evening during ILTM there are parties. These parties are quite interesting as the cultural diversity is huge. The outfits that some/many deem appropriate in Russia (for instance) don't work here in Cannes ... or coming to think of it, anywhere else in the world.

No-one likes my Avoca scarves though ... I LOVE them ... so there.

I think I have agreed to become a "friend of the Seychelles" ... forty people from around the world have been appointed travel ambassadors for these islands ... and I believe I am now one of them ... It's a great honour and a responsibility too ... also a wonderful destination for my future holidays! Haha!

Oh - my hotel sent up a bottle of champagne yesterday. Sadly, I am waiting for what I REALLY want ... a bottle of ... water! My minibar is one of these automatic charging things ... worryingly, I have pulled out a few bottles to look at them ... I hope I am not charged for reading the labels ... but knowing my luck ...

I am not going to drink my champagne ... by the way ... anyone want it?

I am exhausted but have one more night of partying ... I mean networking ... here I go!!!

I like them! I do! In fact, I LOVE them! So there ...
The Palais during the Film Festival

Seychelles ... hmmmmmmmmmmm

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

I have been around the world several times today ... in luxury. I have met friends from Tasmania and New Zealand, Canada and Hong Kong, Beijing and Cape Town ... awesome!

I have also been a very busy bee and have had meetings with all the good & great of the luxury travel industry... there are still so many places that ILT needs to film in!

Loads of walking around the Palais ... where - incidently - the Cannes Film Festival is held annually... all very travoglam!

My hotel room is still awful by the way ...
One is a furry monster and the other Chewbacca ...
The most gorgeous boat in the harbour ...

Monday, 6 December 2010

My home in Cannes

First thing first:

SO - I am now in the South of France. The flight from Boston was painless - under 6 hours and the transition to the Nice flight was easy (Terminal 5 and my luggage did NOT get lost) and I arrived here in time for lunch! Le Mas Candille, Cannes is a delightful Relais & Chateaux just outside the city in a wonderful hillside location. The cuisine was rather tasty ... I must stay there one day ...

It's ILTM week - International Luxury Travel Market ... lots of drinking and working.

I am staying down on La Croisette - the main thoroughfare here in Cannes. I am sleeping at The Carlton - the famous hotel on the strip. It's rather - um - rundown. It does still have some amazing original features but I am not sure it's "world class" ... anyway ...

The weather is TERRIBLE! Cold and windy and wet ... brrrrrr .... ah well - 3 days of this, then home! Yay!
the famous exterior ... Cannes Film Festival?

Sunday, 5 December 2010

A quick entry today as I am off to the airport for my flight to Cannes via London. Have had a wonderful time here in Boston ... I really feel that 3 days is just about right for a visit: the City, Cambridge, Harvard, North End, South End ... the Park ... the pizzerias (!) ... and NOT the Science Museum!

The lovely lady who has been making sure that I have enjoyed my visit to Boston - Kristan Fletcher (above) - the PR Director here at the Four Seasons. She has made sure that I got to see all that need seeing and do all the things that need doing ... including purchasing some special Xmas "pants" ... 20 days until they are worn!!
Last night - North End and Little Italy. A wonderful area with sweet restaurants ... and cafes. Dinner was at Carmen - just 8 tables ... yummy food & wine ....
Farewell Boston ... Hello Cannes!

Saturday, 4 December 2010

The closest I will ever get to Harvard University! Yes - I took a trip over the Charles River to smell the aroma of students. I was disappointed to see hoards of students looking studious or sporty ... none looking hungover or suffering from the excesses of life. How times have changed. Maybe watching "Animal House" is no longer a Fresher Week standard!

Harvard - pretty. Also, found a superb Curious George book & DVD store ... the highlight of my day!
My suite ... 1-bedroom with views
The Four Seasons bed ... my "second" bed ...
The view from my bed! I sleep with curtains open so I have got to see sunrises and sunsets ... lovely.
Boston is famed for its antique shops - this one's name made me chuckle.
I am a nerd. There I said it. Any city that has a science or space museum has a definite visitor in me. The Boston Museum of Science is a truly AWFUL experience. It costs $21 per adult entry and for that HUGE sum, you get three floors of unoriginal rubbish.

A replica of a Gemini space capsule --- a lifesize model of a fighter used in Star Wars (surely science fiction???) - some very sad looking monkeys in a cage - it was a depressing 1-hour waste of my life. London's Science Museum is cheaper to visit and 1 trillion times better.

Oh - and the photo above? What is a multi-purpose spoon? I used it to stir my tea (success) but also tried it out as a jet fighter (failure) ... sadly, it snapped when I stood on it ... multi-purpose? ... pah!
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