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I was timid and frightened as a child. Yours truly did not shin up mountains or do any other kind of adventurous stuff.
I was sent to a nice Church of England girls' school and at that time, after university, a woman was expected to become a teacher, a nurse or a missionary - prior to marriage.
I sailed through my childhood with a complete lack of any drama.
I keep telling myself to calm down, to take less of an interest in things and not to get so excited, but I still care a lot about liberty, freedom of speech and expression, and fairness in journalism.
I have nothing to do with the selection of stories. I'm the reporter.
I have never been attracted to any kind of violence.
I don't want to be involved in endless media gossip.
I don't sit there and speculate. I'm not that sort of person. It wastes time, actually.
I also read modern novels - I have just had to read 60 as I am one of the judges for the Orange Fiction Prize.
Hair is also a problem. I remember once, when I was reporting from Beirut at the height of the civil war, someone wrote in to the BBC complaining about my appearance.
But in the first Gulf war the United Kingdom was not under any threat from Iraq, and is still less so in the second one. Then there is no justification for obstructing freedom of information, particularly as nations have a right to know what their soldiers are being used for.
Beslan, where the Russian authorities stopped live coverage of the school being stormed, was an illustration of the progress we still have to make.
Being A Woman
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