• Out in the Open: Staff writer Jill Carroll says that the Tunisian police maintain a presence outside the house of Abdullah Zouari, a prominent dissident (see story). "He can go out of his house but he can't leave the city. But whenever foreigners come to see him, the police drive away so that their role won't be obvious," Jill says. When she was setting up an appointment to see him, he took great precautions to ensure that they wouldn't know she was coming. And he succeeded: When she and her assistant walked up to the house (the taxi driver refused to take them right up to the house), the police were there. "When they saw me, they hopped in their car and drove away. They are not eager to show how they're treating him. Some police are stationed at a house across the street. Mr. Zouari pointed them out to us on a walk around his house, and they ducked. But he wanted the police to see us with him – it is a form of protection to him."
• Why I Won't Move: After she reported on the booming development south of Cancún, Mexico, staff writer Sara Miller Llana and her husband went to Xpu-Ha (pronounced eesh-pooh ha) Bay together (see story). "I've been to Cancún before, and it's true that you have no sense of local life," she says. But when she and her husband, Asel, went to take photos of the bay, Rosalio Mezo, who lives there, invited them to stay for his nephew's birthday party. "We went out on the beach, relaxing and listening to a guy play the guitar. They had been fishing the night before, and they had lobster salad, lobster bisque, and a whitefish of some sort wrapped in palm leaves and cooked in coals under the sand," Sara says. "The lobster salad was huge; it probably would have cost $1,000 if you'd bought it on the East Coast. The event gave us a sense of the lifestyle they had -- they would lose this if their land was developed."
– Amelia Newcomb
Deputy World editor