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Opinion:
Markus KARLSSON

Markus KARLSSON
FRANCE 24 Economics Reporter

The shoes make the man (or the millionaire)

Le 26-01-2012

It's all about the shoes. That's how I'd summarise my first full day at the World Economic Forum in Davos.

Whoever came up with the saying 'the shoes make the man' probably did so on a Swiss mountain top.  You see it's snowy here in Davos -- apparently the town hasn't seen this much frozen precipitation in 66 years -- and without proper footwear, your feet could very well turn into ice blocks. There's also the risk of slipping and falling over at any given moment.

The experienced have come well-equipped, and it separates the wheat from the chaff. You'll recognise the seasoned Davos participant by a well-groomed business suit, complemented by a pair of sturdy, warm boots.

All of us didn't get the memo, unfortunately. I observed one chief executive of a bank earlier walking down the Davos promenade,  her pace extremely slow as she navigated the icy patches. Her shoes did not pass the Davos test.

What else has happened here? Well, a lot of work, a lot of walking (hence the shoe observation), and a lot of people-spotting.

It's no wonder Davos and the World Economic Forum is a business journalist's dream.

During a brief pit-stop in the Congress Centre earlier, I spotted three chief executives, and two Nobel-prize-winning economists, and I nearly rugby tackled George Soros by accident. Thankfully, I managed to avoid him at the last second.

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