The "DaySide" staff continues to get e-mail from viewers asking what happened to "DaySide" host Linda Vester, so we've asked Linda five questions about what she's up to these days.
DAYSIDE: Linda! Where have you been? We haven't seen you on "DaySide" in weeks!
LINDA VESTER: Hi everyone! I've been on maternity leave since July 1 — my baby boy is due to be born in late October, so I thought I'd take some extra time before he's born to spend with my husband and daughter.
DAYSIDE: Are you coming back?
LINDA: Yes, I'm definitely coming back, though not for a whole year. It's pretty unusual for a news anchor to take a whole year's maternity leave, but I feel strongly this is something I want to do as a mom for my kids.
DAYSIDE: Will you come back as the host of "DaySide" again?
LINDA: Well, the honest answer to that is, I think so — but I really leave it in my boss's hands. When he generously agreed to let me take a year's leave, I said that when I come back, whatever he needs me to do, I'll do.
DAYSIDE: Are you working on any projects right now?
LINDA: Yes, I'm so glad you asked about that. As I sit here watching my pregnant belly get larger and larger, I'm also producing a documentary about a young boy who survived the 1994 genocide in Rwanda (search). This is a part of my life that few of you know about: When I was a reporter in Rwanda back in 1994 covering the genocide, I met two wonderful teenage boys whose whole family had been murdered there. My producer and I hired them as our translators and we became friends. Then, when I was sent back home from that assignment (at the time I lived in London), I thought, "How can I possibly leave these boys behind?" It seemed the only right thing to do was to take them under my wing, which is what I did, along with my producer on that assignment (a woman named Truus Bos). Truus and I ended up essentially adopting these boys. Sadly, only one of them survived. The other one is the focus of this documentary — in fact, he's also the director of the film. I hope someday you will all get to see it — it's called "Back Home."
DAYSIDE: What do you miss most about working at the number one cable news network?
LINDA: That's easy: I miss the daily give-and-take with the viewers. For those of you who came to the studio to sit in the audience, being with you and chatting was my favorite part of every workday. Then after the show was over, I got to correspond with so many others by e-mail. I feel a little disconnected from all of you now, and I miss it. But before you know it, I'll be back! Thanks for checking in with me, and please stay in touch — I do get to read the e-mail you send to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bye for now! —Linda