QUIRKY WORLD ... Quick change for Pope Francis in Burger King

BOLIVIA: With a vast crowd waiting and a temporary altar, Pope Francis needed a place to change before saying Mass in Bolivia — and the closest place was a Burger King.

So the famously unpretentious pontiff used the fast food restaurant before walking to the altar to address hundreds of thousands of pilgrims in Christ the Redeemer Square in Santa Cruz.

The restaurant was closed for business due to the Mass, in which the Pope denounced consumerism.

Wifi summit

JAPAN:

Climbers who reach the summit of Mount Fuji will be able to share their achievement via free wifi. A Japanese mobile network said there would be eight hotspots on Japan’s most famous mountain, including the 12,389ft (3 776m) summit. The initiative is aimed at attracting more overseas visitors to Shizuoka and Yamanashi, the two states that are home to Mount Fuji.

KKK ruling

USA:

A court is deciding whether the state of Georgia violated a Ku Klux Klan group’s constitutional rights — by refusing to allow it to take part in a road clean-up programme.

The Georgia KKK group’s application for a volunteer road cleaning programme was denied in 2012. In an unlikely move, the American Civil Liberties Union Foundation sued on the group’s behalf, saying its right to free speech was violated. In November, a judge ruled in the organisation’s favour, saying the state gave the KKK scrutiny not applied to other groups and that it could help clean up a stretch of highway. The Georgia Court of Appeals will issue a decision in the coming months.

Sewage line

USA:

Authorities in the border city of Nogales, Arizona, believe smugglers were using an international sewage line to transport drugs into the US from Mexico when the pipe became clogged, sending gallons of waste through an illegal tunnel and into a house and local businesses.

Officials discovered waste coming out of the house near the border with Mexico. City manager Shane Dille said there was so much waste that it was oozing from the front door and side of the house.

The international pipeline runs through Nogales, Arizona, and Nogales, Sonora, and carries 10m gallons of waste each day, Dille said. It was connected to a tunnel that led to a house on a street near the border.

He said a video feed showed several bundles that had gotten clogged in the sewage line, forcing waste to travel through the tunnel.

Tiger team

SCOTLAND:

A male tiger has arrived at a zoo amid hopes he will father cubs to boost the critically- endangered species.

Sumatran tiger Jambi is settling into his new home at Edinburgh Zoo having arrived from the Berlin Tier Park in Germany. He is intended as a partner for the zoo’s female tiger Baginda. The pair are currently living next door to each other.

Enigma machine

ENGLAND:

A rare surviving example of an Enigma machine, used by the German military to send coded messages during the Second World War, is expected to fetch £70,000 (€97,000) at auction.

The machines were vital to the Nazi war effort but the Allies broke the codes — a feat said to have shortened the war by several years.

The work done to crack the codes by Alan Turing and fellow code-breakers at Bletchley Park was immortalised in the film The Imitation Game.

At the church on time

ENGLAND:

Arriving to your wedding in a police car may not be every bride’s dream, but one couple is thanking officers for saving their big day.

Dianne Hunnibell had hired a vintage Rolls-Royce to take her to tie the knot at Stowmarket Register Office in Suffolk but the classic car broke down on the way.

.Suffolk Police traffic officer Ian Jepp was called to the scene on the A14 and rescued the bridal party from the side of the road, taking them the remaining 24km to the venue.

Snakes in a house

USA:

An estate agent is asking a judge to throw out a lawsuit claiming the agent knowingly sold a house in Annapolis infested with snakes.

The Capital reports that Barbara Van Horn, of Champion Realty, and her lawyer last week filed a motion in Anne Arundel County Circuit Court to dismiss the lawsuit.

In the motion, Van Horn says mediation has not taken place. She says the contract from the sale states mediation is a prerequisite to any action in court.

In May, Jeff and Jody Brooks filed a lawsuit seeking $2m or to rescind the purchase and return the house. The family says four months after buying it, inspectors found snake dens and tunnels in the walls.


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