Reporters on the Job

DESPERATE IN MONROVIA: Reporter Nicole Itano says that working in the Liberian capital of Monrovia (page 1) is made all the more difficult by the friendliness of the locals. "Conditions are horrid. Every building in the city is overflowing with refugees. You have dozens of people packed into a single room with no food, electricity, or water," she says. "Yet, they are very helpful and friendly toward journalists. Of course, after most conversations there's the gentle request, 'Can you give me something to eat?'

"That's the hardest part of working here. You can't help everybody, and yet everybody you meet needs help," says Nicole. "You feel guilty as you go back to your hotel."

Not that Nicole is living in luxurious conditions. She's been sleeping on the floor, sharing a room with other journalists in the Mamba Point Hotel. There's electricity for only a few hours at night. "I do have a view of the Atlantic from the balcony," she says cheerfully.

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But, she adds, there are no US ships to be seen offshore, yet.

SEPT. 11 SHOCKWAVE: The last time Mark Rice-Oxley reported on British Airways was nearly two years ago. He joined a group of reporters invited to the relaunch of the Concorde supersonic jet. "We were taken to BA's waterside headquarters at Heathrow, and the Concorde's chief pilot was giving us a look at all the improvements to their flagship aircraft," says Mark. But the event was interrupted by an aviation disaster: Sept. 11. "The pilot tried to continue, but it seemed so unimportant. Not just the Concorde, but the whole aviation industry is still trying to recover from that event (page 7)."

David Clark Scott
World editor

Cultural snapshot

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