Cargo bikes the new minivan for cycling families SEATTLE (AP) - One fisherman uses a bike to deliver hundreds of pounds of salmon to local markets. A mom who regularly shuttles her two kids around town once tried to haul a twin mattress home. And some companies are using the bikes to deliver beer kegs or pick up recycling. Cyclists are pushing the limits of what they can haul on cargo bikes - sturdy two-wheelers built to haul lots of stuff. The so-called SUV of bicycles are increasingly popular in pedal-friendly communities, from Washington state to Massachusetts.
South Africa begins life without Nelson Mandela JOHANNESBURG (AP) - What next for South Africa? This racially charged country that, on Nelson Mandela's watch, inspired the world by embracing reconciliation in all-race elections in 1994 is again in the global spotlight after the loss of such a towering historical figure. It is a time not just for grief and gratitude, but also a clear-eyed assessment of national strengths and shortcomings in a future without a man who was a guide and comfort to so many.
AP PHOTOS: Mandela remembered around the world Mourners sing and dance outside Nelson Mandela's old house in Johannesburg. In Pakistan, children gather around his portrait holding candles. Well-wishers leave flowers outside South African diplomatic missions in Beijing and New York. People around the world are mourning Mandela, speaking out about the life and legacy of the former South African president and sharing how they drew inspiration from his strength and message of continuing the struggle against social injustice.
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AP WAS THERE: Mandela's release from prison EDITOR'S NOTE - On Feb. 11, 1990, AP reporter Greg Myre was in Cape Town when Nelson Mandela was released from prison after 27 years. Mandela walked out of Victor Verster prison hand-in-hand with his then wife, Winnie, as people worldwide rejoiced. The momentous event rivaled the fall of the Berlin Wall just a few months earlier as a symbol of newfound freedom. Twenty-three years after its original publication, the AP is making this story available to its subscribers. ---
Solid US job growth cuts unemployment to 7 pct. WASHINGTON (AP) - The U.S. job market has been recovering fitfully for three years. Now, it's starting to show consistency. Employers added 203,000 jobs in November, and the unemployment rate fell to 7 percent, a five-year low. Stock investors were heartened by the news. The Dow Jones industrial average surged 180 points in late-afternoon trading.
Icy winter storm shuts down North Texas DALLAS (AP) - Freezing rain and stinging winds slammed the Southwest Friday and made a strangely blank landscape out of normally sun-drenched North Texas: mostly empty highways covered in a sometimes impassable frost, closed schools and businesses, and millions of residents hunkered down for icy conditions expected to last through the weekend. Earlier this week, many in Texas were basking in spring-like temperatures that hit the 80s. But by Thursday, Texas was facing the same wintry blast that has slammed much of the U.S., bringing frigid temperatures, ice and snow.
US to allow eagle deaths _ to aid wind power WASHINGTON (AP) - Under pressure from the wind-power industry, the Obama administration said Friday it will allow companies to kill or injure eagles without the fear of prosecution for up to three decades. The new rule is designed to address environmental consequences that stand in the way of the nation's wind energy rush: the dozens of bald and golden eagles being killed each year by the giant, spinning blades of wind turbines.
New consumer tips for Obama's fixer-upper website WASHINGTON (AP) - It doesn't rival Amazon and Travelocity, but President Barack Obama's much-maligned health insurance website finally seems to be working reasonably well most of the time. Still, consumers are well-advised to verify, not just trust.
Report: Central African death toll up to 280 BANGUI, Central African Republic (AP) - National radio in Central African Republic says the death toll from violence in the country has increased to at least 280 people. Christian militias attacked the capital of Bangui at dawn Thursday, killing scores of people and setting off chaotic fighting.
Dylan's electric guitar sells for nearly $1M NEW YORK (AP) - The Fender Stratocaster that Bob Dylan plugged in when he famously went electric at the 1965 Newport Folk Festival sold Friday for nearly $1 million - the highest price ever paid for a guitar at auction. A buyer identified only as a private individual agreed to pay $965,000, including the auction house's fees, for the sunburst-finish guitar, Christie's said.