If you were one of the millions of Americans who travelled by plane over the Thanksgiving break – perhaps heading home for a family gathering – you may also be among the most disgruntled air travellers in the world. Fact is, US airports are lagging way behind other countries in the world rankings, losing out to their Asian counterparts, as well as some European hubs.
How safe do you feel in your city? Turns out it’s not such an easy question to answer as the concept itself differs from person to person – country-dwellers might not consider it possible to define any urban environment as safe, for instance. Last year’s Safer Cities project, commissioned by UN-Habitat with the aim of making urban areas safer to inhabit, gathered together some interesting initiatives with unexpected results – including the use of mime artists to improve road traffic safety in Bogota – yes, really!
Interestingly, the idea of safety isn’t directly related to the incidence of violent crime – terrorism and cybercrime are in the increase as urban areas rely more heavily on tech and systems that govern transport and communications targets for hackers.
Escape to the country
If you’re on the FBI’s most wanted list, what’s the best place to lay low? Turns out the Appalachian Trail is the perfect spot if you’re keen to evade the strong arm of the law, as it emerges that multi-million-dollar embezzler James T Hammes eluded capture for six years by posing as a hiker.
Hammes had been on the run since 2009 for allegedly embezzling more than $8.7m from a Pepsi bottling plant in Kentucky. He was apprehended earlier this month in Virginia and is expected to return to Ohio to face charges.
Energy for free?
What if you could supply all the energy need for your home from a set of rechargeable batteries? Well it seems that this futuristic vision could be more than just an eco-pipedream in the wake of Tesla’s announcement that it intends to enter the domestic energy market with low-cost solar batteries for homes, businesses and utilities.
You are what you eat
If the old maxim ‘you are what you eat’ holds any water, then new evidence would suggest that rather than sticking to the oft-touted Mediterranean diet, we should, instead, be eating like Vikings. It seems that not only are we destined to envy the Scandinavians their model prisons, schools and healthcare system, but we should also aspire to their eating habits if we want to live longer, healthier lives.
History in the making
This month, a 90-year-old pocket watch will be auctioned by Sotheby’s. Not a story that would normally make the Bank of Cardiff news blog, granted. This watch is a special case, though. The ‘Graves Supercomplication’ is a bespoke timepiece created in 1925 for American industrialist, Henry Graves and is the only one of its kind. The combined prestige of the maker, Patek Philippe and its illustrious owner make it likely to be the most valuable timepiece ever sold.