In some countries of Africa, there's a land rush under way as investors claim farmland, establish mega-farms and try to cash in on high prices for food and biofuels. These deals are controversial. Critics accuse investors of dispossessing subsistence farmers.
Katerina Margaritou and Elias Tilligadas live in Athens. They're getting married next Wednesday — three days after the Greek election that has the global economy on edge.
Katerina is a chemist, and she works for a company whose main customer is the Greek government. The Greek government, of course, is broke. So Katerina hasn't been paid since last year.
"I'm very happy because I'm getting married," Katerina told me this week. "But I'm very sad because at the moment I cannot buy a dress. My boss promised me that he's going to give money to buy a dress. So I'm waiting."
As car companies struggle to meet growing demand, the third shift is making a comeback. But many factories running on three shifts are doing it differently from in the past. And that new "three crew" shift pattern could make what's normally a hard job even harder.
At Ford's Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne, employees work 10-hour shifts four days a week. The so-called A crew gets days, while the B crew gets afternoons. But the C crew shift rotates its start time every week. On Fridays and Saturdays, workers start at 6:00 a.m. On Mondays and Tuesdays, they start at 4:30 p.m.
Alaska Natives are twice as likely to get colon cancer and die from it as the white population in the United States. When Mayo Clinic doctor David Ahlquist took a trip to Bethel, Alaska, in the mid-1990s, that startling statistic caught his attention.
"Here they had one of the world's highest rates of colon cancer and one of the world's poorest outcomes in terms of survival from cancer, because of late diagnosis," Ahlquist says.
Today at All Things Considered, we continue a project we're calling NewsPoet. Each month, we bring in a poet to spend time in the newsroom — and at the end of the day, to compose a poem reflecting on the day's stories.
Jamie Lynn Stevenson can still remember the smell of walnut meringue cookies wafting from her great-grandmother's kitchen. The "little piles of heaven," also known in her family as bussels, or "kisses" in German, were dense but chewy, with hints of caramelized nut flavor inside.
"I was just salivating waiting for them," Stevenson recalls. "And the great thing about these cookies is that they didn't take very long to bake!"
Head to the bookstore or pick up your Nook or Kindle or iPad, and prepare, if you will, to make some decisions about your summer reading life. My suggestions this year tend to be fine new fiction, the kind that not only flows on the page but also makes a sort of music in your mind. So, wordmusic it is! Strike up the orchestra! It's going to be a big summer for big broad American literary voices, voices that leap from the page and linger with you, echo through your summer and perhaps even beyond.