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It’s a weird world

COMPENSATED: An Israeli judge has ordered the country’s prison authority to pay an inmate over US$1 000 in compensation after he complained of having to share a cell with cockroaches.

Mordechai Yehudai file

d a lawsuit complaining of poor hygiene, a lack of fresh air, broken windows and inmates who smoke in a handful of cells, a spokeswoman for the Israel Prisons Service said

“The Prisons Service mistreated the plaintiff in a number of ways, including … broken windows, cockroaches as well as incarceration with smokers,” judge Irit Cohen wrote in her verdict, according to newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth.

The spokeswoman said the inmate’s cell would be cleaned up. Yehudai has been held in three different prisons and has had complaints about conditions in all of them.

“Prisoners have the right to sue us whenever they see fit and we comply with the court’s rulings,” she said. — Reuters.

TRAPPED: A retired Scottish school teacher was recovering on Monday after spending nearly four days trapped inside a men’s toilet with no food or mobile phone.

David Leggat was locked inside the bathroom at a lawn bowling club near the Scottish city of Aberdeen after the door jammed and the handle on the outside fell off.

The 55-year-old kept warm by dipping his feet in hot water but only managed to get about three hours’ sleep a night in the freezing temperatures, the local Evening Express newspaper reported.

He was rescued when the cleaner at the club, which is little used in winter, turned up to collect her cleaning equipment.

Leggat said a survival course he had once done had helped him endure his captivity. The cleaning lady said he looked shaken and grey when he emerged. Leggat was stoical.

“At least there was a toilet to use,” he said. “The only thing I regret is not getting trapped behind the bar.” — Reuters.

OFFER: A hotel chain Tuesday said it was offering couples called Joseph and Mary in Britain, Ireland and Spain free accommodation this Christmas on proof of marriage and name.

Hotel chain Travelodge said husbands and wives matching their criteria would get a night’s stay on the house, but with more home comforts than the humble stable of the Christian Nativity story.

The offer, appropriately, runs between Christmas Eve (December 24) to Twelfth Night (January 5, 2008).

“The phrase ‘no room at the inn’ is something that resonates with us in the hotel business,” said Travelodge operations director Jason Cotta.

“Therefore this year we have decided to evoke the true spirit of Christmas and invite Mary and Joseph couples as our guests.”

A Travelodge spokeswoman told AFP couples will have to be married and provide proof of identity and register their names at a special e-mail address. — AFP.

BOUNCED: Police in Sarajevo have set up a permanent patrol on a hill after a spate of accidents in which young lovers have bounced their cars over the edge.

The hill is a popular place for young couples to park their cars and enjoy a little privacy — but it is not without its dangers.

In some cases hand brakes have been knocked free, and in others cars have been bounced over the edge by enthusiastic lovers.

In the latest incident, Risto Bocic and Sonja Pasic, both 22, parked on the hill but the car bounced over the edge and hurled 30 feet down the slope and into the Miljacka River.

The naked lovers were rescued by passers-by who saw the accident and pulled them free. — Ananova.com

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