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The Salt
12:28 am
Tue August 28, 2012

In India, 100-Year-Old Lunch Delivery Service Goes Modern

Dabba wallahs carry lunchboxes to offices in Indian cities. But the old tradition is changing with modern times.
Aijaz Rahi AP

Originally published on Mon October 15, 2012 7:37 am

Every day in Mumbai, some 5,000 deliverymen called dabba wallahs hand deliver 200,000 hot meals to doorsteps across the city. It's an intricate network that requires precise timing and numerous handoffs from courier to courier. The century-old service is a staple for the city's office workers. (See how it works in this video.) But as the city has changed, so too has the service.

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Dead Stop
12:27 am
Tue August 28, 2012

On Remote Island, The Dead Are Buried Far And Wide

Tiny Grindstone Island has only one official cemetery.
Jackie Northam NPR

Originally published on Tue August 28, 2012 5:38 pm

Grindstone Island's lone public dock is just three miles north of the U.S. mainland, a straight shot by powerboat across the St. Lawrence River from Clayton, N.Y. Part of the Thousand Islands, Grindstone Island sits in a waterway shared by the U.S. and Canada.

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Shots - Health Blog
12:27 am
Tue August 28, 2012

Can You Learn While You're Asleep?

Research suggests basic forms of learning are possible while snoozing.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri August 31, 2012 6:44 am

If you're a student, you may have harbored the fantasy of learning lessons while you sleep. Who wouldn't want to stick on a pair of headphones, grab some shut-eye with a lesson about, say, Chinese history playing in his ears — and wake up with newly acquired knowledge of the Ming Dynasty?

Sadly, it doesn't work. The history lesson either keeps you from going to sleep, or it doesn't — in which case you don't learn it.

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Energy
12:14 am
Tue August 28, 2012

Methane Making An Appearance In Pa. Water Supplies

Ted and Gale Franklin live in Leroy Township, Pa., where people have been dealing with flammable gas puddles and tainted well water.
Becky Lettenberger NPR

Originally published on Tue August 28, 2012 12:03 pm

Mike and Nancy Leighton's problems began on May 19, just as Mike was settling in to watch the Preakness Stakes. A neighbor in Leroy Township, Pa., called Mike and told him to check the water well located just outside his front door.

"I said, 'I'll be down in 15 minutes.' I wanted to see the race," Leighton said. But as the horses were racing, Leighton's well was overflowing. Typically, there's between 80 to 100 feet of head space between the top of the well and its water supply. But when Leighton went outside, the water was bubbling over the top.

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U.S.
12:13 am
Tue August 28, 2012

Helping Foster Kids Even After Adoption

Originally published on Tue August 28, 2012 6:32 am

Say "adoption" and many Americans think "babies." The U.S. system was largely organized around placing infants, both from this country and abroad. It turns out that, by far, the largest number of adoptions in the U.S. is through the foster care system. That means toddlers, young children, even teens.

Yet many in the field say the system does little to help families cope with the special issues a number of these children will face, even years after adoption.

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Africa
12:12 am
Tue August 28, 2012

Somaliland: A Pocket Of Stability In A Chaotic Region

Bundles of Somaliland's own currency bills are laid out by a money-changer on a street in Hargeisa, capital of the unrecognized breakaway republic of Somaliland in northwestern Somalia. Investors are beginning to move into the untapped market in Somaliland, a stable island in a turbulent region.
Kyodo/Landov

Originally published on Tue August 28, 2012 6:32 am

Somalia is synonymous with failed states, pirates and Islamist militants. But in the nation's northwest lies a peaceful, stable territory with an elected government known as Somaliland. The enclave broke away from the fractious Horn of Africa nation in 1991 and has been going it alone ever since.

To the disappointment of its residents, Somaliland has not been recognized as an independent nation, but its stability is attracting investors that other parts of Somalia can only dream of.

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Crime In The City
8:32 pm
Mon August 27, 2012

Michigan Author Dreams Up A Deadlier Ann Arbor

In Very Bad Men, Seva is Sen. John Casterbridge's favorite restaurant. Dolan won't say if he's a good guy or not, because "that would be giving it away."
Vasenka via Flickr

Ask Harry Dolan to take you for lunch at a restaurant he's written about, and he won't disappoint. In downtown Ann Arbor, Mich., on Liberty Street, the vegetarian restaurant Seva serves mushroom sliders and yam fries that both the crime writer and his characters are quite fond of. With any luck, you'll also catch the perfect song playing in the background — "Psycho Killer" by the Talking Heads.

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Participation Nation
4:03 pm
Mon August 27, 2012

Sticking To Basics In Overland Park, Kan.

Tim Bair and Theresa Hamilton hoist a Giving the Basics banner.
Courtesy of Giving The Basics

One day Theresa Hamilton, a mother of 12, was struck by how hard it is to come by human dignity when you are down on your luck. For instance, you can't use Food Stamps to buy toilet paper or laundry soap.

So Theresa founded Giving The Basics — an organization that provides people with toothbrushes, feminine hygiene products and other human-dignity necessities.

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It's All Politics
3:37 pm
Mon August 27, 2012

The Florida Delegation's Snowy Day

A police boat patrols the waterways in the downtown area Monday in Tampa, Fla., site of the Republican National Convention.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Mon August 27, 2012 3:56 pm

It's the closest these Floridians will ever get to an actual snow day.

The threat of Isaac canceled most official business at the Republican National Convention Monday. But the storm went west, sending a little wind and rain to Tampa. The typical summer afternoon thunderstorm is worse.

So members of Florida's delegation were free to engage in a political snowball fight — they ate, partied and trashed a political traitor: former Republican Gov. Charlie Crist.

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All Tech Considered
3:23 pm
Mon August 27, 2012

Online University For All Balances Big Goals, Expensive Realities

Students work at the University of the People student computer center in Haiti. Students from 129 countries are currently enrolled with the institution.
Courtesy of University of the People

Originally published on Mon August 27, 2012 3:54 pm

Naylea Omayra Villanueva Sanchez, 22, lives on the edge of the Amazon rain forest in Tarapoto, northern Peru.

"Where I live, there's only jungle," Villanueva Sanchez says through an interpreter. "A university education is inaccessible."

And that's true in more ways than one. Villanueva Sanchez is in a wheelchair, the result of a motorcycle accident that left her paralyzed from the waist down.

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