Feature

Tsunami soccer ball drifts to Alaska, and more

Last month, David Baxter found a soccer ball inscribed with Japanese writing on a beach on Middleton Island, Alaska.

Tsunami soccer ball drifts to Alaska A Japanese teenager who lost his home in last year’s devastating tsunami has recovered at least one prized memento, thanks to a beachcomber half a world away. David Baxter found a soccer ball inscribed with Japanese writing on a beach on Middleton Island, Alaska, last month, and immediately guessed it was debris from the disaster. His Japanese wife could read the writing and contacted the ball’s owner, Misaki Murakami, 16, from the city of Rikuzentakata. The teenager said this week that the lost ball had been a gift from third-grade classmates. 

A unique squatters’ paradiseA penniless carpenter has secretly built a tree house in a publicly owned forest near Whistler, British Columbia, with building materials obtained for free on Craigslist. Joel Allen, a former computer technician, first dreamed of constructing an egg-shaped tree fort five years ago, but lacked the funds to make it a reality. Now, after salvaging $10,000 worth of hardwood, glass, and lumber online, he has completed his unique squatters’ paradise. Allen has one obstacle left to overcome, though—buying the land beneath his tree house. “It took a lot of work to build it,” he said, “and I’d rather not take it down, just yet.”

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