New Yorkers awoke this morning to a fresh blanket of snow. It was admittedly somewhat jarring. (Remember when you were a kid and snow was so exciting, at what age does it become annoying?)
I'm heading to Southeast Asia tomorrow morning, so there's always a lot of last minute stuff I have to do, and trudging through the snow just makes it that much harder. I've been getting shots for things I'd never even heard of -- who knew you need a vaccine for Japanese Encephalitis?
For years, I never got shots when I traveled. I figured it wasn't worth the hassle. Considering my cameraman Neil was hospitalized after our recent Brazil trip (he'd been bitten by a spider according to one doctor) and my other cameraman Phil had some bug lay eggs inside him, I've decided to get all the shots I can, and I've promised myself I will actually take my malaria medicine with me this time.
We'll be in Southeast Asia next week broadcasting from a variety of locations. I went to school in Vietnam in the early 1990s but I've only been back to the region once since then. I went for the elections in Cambodia, and I'm looking forward to returning to see how the region has changed. We'll be reporting on environmental issues for our "Planet in Peril" series, but we'll also be looking at sex trafficking, in particular the trafficking of children, which is especially bad in Cambodia.
We had our morning call earlier today, and there are a number of stories we are following for tonight's broadcast. The morning call is always interesting, folks call in from home or the gym or wherever they are to talk about what's happening today. You can usually hear a couple of kids in the background as producers try to maximize time with their families and get work done at the same time.
Plastered in the middle of our newsroom is this dry-erase board. It's where we lay out the day's show. The words "Ask Believe Receive" are written on the top. I think someone put it up there as a joke when we did a segment on "The Secret." No one's bothered to erase it yet.
Anyway, we were just meeting in front of what we call the "big board." And for now, it's a work in progress. That's okay, it's early. Usually, whatever we put on the board now gets changed later anyway. Still, there are some stories that will definitely make the cut.
One of them is Valerie Plame Wilson. The former CIA operative testified before Congress today and blamed the White House for blowing her cover. But is that true? The Washington Post had put out an editorial several years ago saying, Plame's husband was actually responsible for what happened to her career. I asked him about that a couple of weeks ago and he categorically denied it. We'll look at the facts and find out what exactly she was doing over at the agency.
Jeff Koinange has a fascinating profile about the very strange president of Gambia. This guy has no formal medical training, but he claims he can cure people of AIDS. Actually he claims he can only do it on certain days of the week. He says the treatment came to him in a dream.
From there, things get really bizarre. It's a really interesting story, the kind you won't see anywhere else. That's it for now. I'm off to take another look at the big board.
Ask. Believe. Receive. Sure, why not?