In a country where politicians shield themselves behind dark-tinted windows in sleek limousines, Roman paparazzi are having a field day with Italy's new premier-designate, Mario Monti, who actually walks down the street, without bodyguards.
But the longest sound bite reporters are likely to get from him is: "Isn't it a splendid day?"
Monti was chosen to replace the flamboyant Silvio Berlusconi, who was forced to step down over the country's worsening eurozone crisis.
King Abdullah of Jordan put more pressure on Syria's embattled President Bashar Assad to step down.
"I believe, if I were in his shoes, I would step down," King Abdullah told the BBC. "If Bashar has the interest of his country, he would step down, but he would also create an ability to reach out and start a new phase of Syrian political life."
As one GOP presidential candidate after another bounces up, and then down, in the polls, Mitt Romney has established himself as the slow and steady front-runner for most of the race.
Even if he's not thrilling the Republican Party's conservative wing, the former Massachusetts governor has managed to hover at or near the top. That's also true in the leadoff caucus state of Iowa, despite waging a low-key campaign.