• China Warming: As staff writer Peter Ford's first winter in Beijing approached, old China hands warned him of the vicious cold and biting winds in store for him. Even though he had coped well enough during several Moscow winters (following the Russian maxim "there is no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothes"), he wondered how it would be.
"At least, there would be the romantic consolation of being able to skate on the frozen moat beneath the walls of the Forbidden City. Or so I thought," says Peter. "Beijing experienced its warmest winter in more than 100 years, and the moat was skateable for only a couple of weeks. I missed my opportunity, and who knows – given current trends (see story) – if I will ever be offered it again?".
Monitor story Follow up
• Homeschooler Goes Home: German homeschooler Melissa Busekros returned home Monday, April 23, on her 16th birthday. As reported in the April 17 article, "US Evangelicals aim to influence European law," she was removed by police three months ago and placed in a foster home. Homeschooling is illegal under Germany's compulsory education law. At age 16, she has more legal rights, and exercised them to return home. Also, a state psychology exam last week concluded that she was a "stable" person and did not suffer from "school phobia," which was one of the reasons given for her removal from home.
• Abortion Laws in Latin America: In the April 23 article, "Abortion rights gain ground in Latin America," we incorrectly stated that El Salvador and Chile are easing restrictions on abortions. They are not.
– David Clark Scott