Reporters on the Job

Back in Martyrs' Square: Tuesday's rally in Beirut, Lebanon marking the anniversary of the Rafik Hariri assassination (and the start of the Cedar Revolution) had a déjà vu quality for correspondent Nicholas Blanford, who lives nearby. "I was sitting at my computer, the windows were open, and I could hear the distant hubbub of loud speakers and crowds. It brought back all the sights and sounds of late February and March last year when the uprising was in full swing," says Nick.

At that time, there was a strong feeling that things would change dramatically. "We expected a thorough political and civic shake-up," says Nick. "But once the elections got under way, the same alliances formed, and the same faces were in power. That's been followed by a tense security situation in recent months. But being back in Martyrs' Square on a sunny day with thousands of families from all over the country, you could once again feel that sense of optimism for Lebanon."

A Slippery Slope: As part of his reporting about Kristan Bromley, Britain's Olympic skeleton contender, staff writer Peter Ford went to a World Cup race in St. Moritz, Switzerland, last month.

"The famous Cresta Run was built by British military officers on holiday there in the late 19th century. The Union Flag still flies over the St. Moritz Tobogganing Club there," notes Peter.

For a mere $100, amateurs can take a turn on the ice track. It drops 514 feet over three-fourths of a mile through eight turns. Speeds reach 88 m.p.h.

"I was told that the only ones who make such runs are 'mad dogs and Englishmen,' he says. While Peter has the proper accent to take a turn on the Cresta Run, he declined. His official reason, and he's sticking to it, is that he's too dedicated a reporter and that he "didn't have enough time."

- David Clark Scott
World editor

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