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RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:
Congress is heading into its last week before taking a summer recess. For a change, lawmakers are not racing the clock to overt a fiscal calamity. Still, the standoff between the two parties has all but stopped the process of governing.
Standing outside her sixth-floor apartment in the Bronx, Lissette Encarnacion says she sometimes forgets the place belongs to her.
"I'm thinking I'm at somebody else's [house]," she says. "I'm ringing my own doorbell."
Encarnacion used to have a career in banking, and lived in a real home with her son and husband. Then one night everything changed, she says, when her husband came home drunk and angry, and threw her off a balcony.
Medical tests are rarely a pleasant experience, especially if you're worried that something could be seriously wrong. That's true even though we know that regular screenings and tests often help doctors catch issues early.
Outside the northern Guatemalan town of Olopa, near the Honduran border, farmer Edwin Fernando Diaz Viera stands in the middle of his tiny coffee field. He says it was his lifelong dream to own a farm here. The area is renowned for producing some of the world's richest arabica, the smooth-tasting beans beloved by specialty coffee brewers.
"My farm was beautiful; it was big," he says.
But then, a plant fungus called coffee rust, or roya in Spanish, hit his crop.
"Coffee rust appeared and wiped out everything," he says.
This summer, All Things Considered has been taking a look at the changing lives of men in America. And that means talking about how the country educates boys.
In Berkeley, Calif., a private, non-profit middle school called the East Bay School for Boys is trying to reimagine what it means to build confident young men. In some ways, the school's different approach starts with directing, not stifling, boys' frenetic energy.