Reporters on the Job

Claro Cortes IV/Reuters
STEP INTO MY SHOP: A barber in Beijing practices his trade on the sidewalk. The sign says "Professional Haircut." The cost? About 30 cents.

Mexico By Bus: Staff writer Sara Miller Llana usually takes a taxi to her interviews, particularly when pressed for time. To get to the village of Emiliano Zapata to report today's story about declining remittances in Mexico, she followed a source onto a bus. "It would never have occurred to her to take a taxi because it's too expensive. Before I knew it, we were on a bus heading out of Morelia, the capital of Michoacán. "

The journey required a bus to the bus station, a bus to one town, and then a "combi" or minibus to Emiliano Zapata "Two hours later we arrived. The total cost was about $1.50 instead of a hefty $30! "

Beyond the price was the efficiency of the service. "It always amazes me how well transportation works here. When you have to travel by bus or train in the US, there are long waits for the scheduled departure. It seems so daunting. But here there are private, informal bus services and you never have to wait. The bus is always full and ready to go the second you step on," says Sara.

Monitor follow-up

Mexico's New Legal System: Mexico threw open the doors to its national judicial system Tuesday, allowing US-style public trials and creating a presumption of innocence.

As reported on April 3, "Rough border town leads reform of Mexico's legal system," the Ciudad Juárez courts have been pioneering a radical change in the Mexican criminal justice system.

Under the long-awaited constitutional amendment signed by President Felipe Calderón, guilt or innocence will no longer be decided behind closed doors by a judge relying on written evidence.

The country now faces the task of implementing the law's new provisions, which must be in place by 2016, the Associated Press reports.

David Clark Scott

World editor

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