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Girl's Tragic Story Rocks Nation and Its Government

3 Romanian officials have lost their jobs over Alexandra Macesanu's disappearance

(Newser) - The plight of a missing girl has rocked Romania and forced three officials—including the nation's education minister—out of their jobs. The tragic story hinges on emergency phone calls made by Alexandra Macesanu, 15, saying she had been kidnapped and raped after disappearing Wednesday while hitchhiking with a...

Murder Trial Opening for 'Kai the Hitchhiker'

Caleb McGillivray claims he only defended himself in sexual assault

(Newser) - "Kai the hitchhiker" will soon learn if his hitchhiking days are over. Opening statements begin Tuesday in the long-awaited trial of the Canadian Internet star turned murder suspect, accused of fatally beating a 73-year-old lawyer who offered up his home in Clark, NJ, reports News 12 . Prosecutors say Joseph...

The World's Greatest Hitchhiker and His 'Wandering Princess'

Juan Villarino and Laura Lazzarino wander the world together on $7 a day

(Newser) - It takes more than a durable thumb and the stomach for strangers to be a top-notch vagabond. Take it from Juan Villarino, dubbed the "world's best hitchhiker" by Wes Enzinna for the New York Times , which profiles Villarino and picks his brain for how he's become the...

Luckless Hitchhiker Throws 'Hissy Fit,' Ends Up Arrested
Luckless Hitchhiker
Throws 'Hissy Fit,'
Ends Up Arrested
in case you missed it

Luckless Hitchhiker Throws 'Hissy Fit,' Ends Up Arrested

Cedric Claude Rene Rault-Verpre did not have a good time in Punakaiki

(Newser) - It's admittedly not the optimal place to become stranded: a New Zealand community that just 70 people call home year-round, and one with no grocery store. But after a 27-year-old French hitchhiker found himself unable to thumb a ride south from Punakaiki after four days of trying, police say...

Have Thumb, Will Marry, Says Hitchhiking Bride

Angelique Arsenault didn't let her limo's flat tire ruin her big day

(Newser) - "For richer and for poorer, through broken-down cars and in health" is how Angelique Arsenault could have rewritten her vows after a pre-wedding roadblock in New Hampshire. The AP reports Arsenault was in her limo with her bridal party on Saturday, on her way to say "I do"...

Vandals Destroy Hitchhiking Robot

Thanks, City of Brotherly Love

(Newser) - A hitchhiking robot that captured the hearts of fans worldwide met its demise in the US. The Canadian researchers who created hitchBOT as a social experiment told the AP that someone in Philadelphia damaged the robot beyond repair yesterday, ending its first American tour after about two weeks. The kid-size...

This Robot Is Hitchhiking Across US

hitchBOT is going from Massachusetts to San Francisco, by thumb

(Newser) - With its thumb raised skyward and a grin on its digital face, the robotic creation of two researchers in Canada is about to start hitchhiking across the US. The humanoid robot named hitchBOT has already caught rides across Canada and in Europe, relying on the kindness and curiosity of strangers....

Why We Need to Reconsider Hitchhiking
 Why We Need 
 to Reconsider 

Why We Need to Reconsider Hitchhiking

Ryan Cooper: It's fun, cheap, and generally safe

(Newser) - The US is dealing with the burdens of crappy public transportation and pricey infrastructure, for which there is a rather simple solution: more hitchhiking, writes Ryan Cooper at the Week . Yes, the once-popular pastime may seem "more risky than playing Russian Roulette with five of the chambers loaded,"...

I Was a Female Hitchhiker— and I Found Humanity's Best

Toby Israel describes positive experiences in Europe

(Newser) - Toby Israel hitchhiked her way through more than 3,700 miles in Croatia, Slovenia, Austria, Germany, France, and Italy, and in the entire three months she spent thumbing, the only negative experience she had was when a male driver asked if she'd ever had sex with two men. And...

Dave Matthews Hitchhikes to His Own Concert

Fans on way to show spot him, pick him up

(Newser) - It's a good thing Emily Kraus and her boyfriend stopped to pick up a hitchhiker on their way to a Dave Matthews Band concert—the wayfarer was none other than Dave Matthews himself. Matthews was out for a bike ride before his concert in Hershey, Penn., when his tire...

Kai the Famous Hitchhiker Arrested on Murder Charges

Caleb Lawrence McGillvary went viral after gas station heroics

(Newser) - "Kai the hitchhiker" became an Internet celebrity in February when he intervened in a gas station attack in Fresno, California, hitting a man on the back of the head with a hatchet to stop him from assaulting a woman, then giving a very entertaining (and profanity-laced) interview to a...

Pa. Woman Declared Dead Turns Up After 11 Years

Brenda Heist vanished after dropping off her children for school

(Newser) - A central Pennsylvania woman who mysteriously disappeared after dropping off her children for school 11 years ago has surfaced in Florida, telling police she traveled there on a whim with homeless hitchhikers, slept under bridges, and survived by scavenging food and panhandling. Brenda Heist, 54, had been declared legally dead,...

Cops: Weird Hitchhiker Shooting Was a Hoax

Ray Dolin did get shot—by himself

(Newser) - It did seem a little too bizarre to be true: The hitchhiker who told police he got shot on a Montana highway has admitted that he shot himself, reports AP . The case drew national headlines because Ray Dolin said he was hitchhiking to gather tales for a memoir he was...

Stranger Shoots Hitchhiker Writing Kindness of America

Raymond Dolin of West Virginia was looking for a ride in Montana

(Newser) - It's so ironic that it almost seems made up: A West Virginia man hitchhiking across America while penning a memoir—working title The Kindness of America—was apparently shot for no apparent reason by a total stranger in Montana on Saturday night. The Billings Gazette reports that Raymond Dolin,...

Lessons From a Cuban Roadtrip
 Lessons From 
 a Cuban Roadtrip 

Lessons From a Cuban Roadtrip

(Newser) - NPR reporter Jason Beaubien didn’t plan to drive across Cuba, but it did provide an apt look at the many problems the island faces. The “Spanish phrase ‘No hay,’ meaning ‘there's no fill-in-the-blank,’ was a constant refrain on this trip,” he reports. The...

Get a Thumbs-Up in Hitchhiking
 Get a Thumbs-Up in Hitchhiking 

Get a Thumbs-Up in Hitchhiking

Expert hitcher talks safety

(Newser) - Hitchhiking, though controversial, remains the epitome of frugal traveling. Ben Bachelder, who has thumbed his way through 35 countries and six continents—including Antarctica—gives the New York Times tips on how to do it right:
  • Start slow: “First-time hitchhikers should go with a friend, just for a little

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