August 18, 2008

August 18, 2008
Thanks for stopping by today and taking a glimpse into my life. Today is Monday so if you are reading this today, I hope you are having a great start to your wekk.

As I talked about yesterday, the big news in my part of the world is currently Hurricane Faye which is near Cuba. Tropical Storm Fay lashed southeastern Cuba with downpours and heavy winds Sunday and was expected to churn over the center of the island before heading toward Florida. The U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami said Fay's movement has been slow and erratic in recent hours. The storm is expected to cross western Cuba late Sunday or early Monday, and pass near the Florida Keys late Monday. Florida declared a state of emergency and a light stream of traffic headed out of Key West on Sunday as officials urged visitors to leave the string of low-lying islands. Most of the islands sit at sea level and could be flooded by Fay's storm surge. A tropical storm watch was in effect for much of southern Florida. A watch means storm conditions are possible within 36 hours. The hurricane center said Fay could approach hurricane strength as it nears the Florida Keys, possibly making landfall along the western coast of Florida. At 8 pm, Fay was centered about 200 miles southeast of Havana and about 265 miles south-southeast of Key West, Florida, according to the hurricane center in Miami. It had maximum sustained winds near 50 mph), was moving west-northwest at 10 mph and was expected to turn to the northwest by late Monday. Before reaching Cuba, Fay battered the island of Hispaniola with torrential rains and flooding, killing one person in Haiti and four in the Dominican Republic. Fay also damaged crucial Haitian farmland as the country battles a food crisis that has sparked deadly riots. It was unclear how many acres were affected. So remember to keep us Floridians in your thoughts and prayers over the next few days. We are expecting winds up to 80mph and torrential rain here in Jacksonville.

Since we have a storm coming, Patrick came over for a visit and then took me over to Publix so I could get groceries and pick up some storm supplies. Since we will probably lose power I limited the amount of freezer and refrigerator items to watch we will probably use up in the next three days. But I did stock up on prepared foods due to the probability of power loss. The hard part is dealing with the heat after the storm during the power loss. When Jacksonville had its last hit from a major storm, we were without power for almost 10 days which made for nightmare living conditions. We were having temperature highs in the high 90s during the power outage. I literally had to run around nude just to keep cool. I felt sorry for our pets and was constantly wetting them down in the shower to keep them cool. So let's keep our fingers crossed and hope for the best with this storm. A friend asked me if we were going to leave since our home is wood. Since the storm is only a category one, I think we will be okay. We have an interior stairwell where I can escape with the animals if necessary. It was great seeing Patrick since it had almost been three weeks since the last time I saw him. I tend to avoid visitors when I am sick but we have spoken on the phone several times for short periods.

The wedding of the year happened this weekend. Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi wed at their home in Beverly Hills, California, Saturday night. De Rossi, 35, wore a backless, light pink dress, and her hair in a loose updo. DeGeneres, 50, dressed in pants, button-up shirt and vest all in white. The ceremony was attended by 19 guests, including DeGeneres' mom, Betty, and de Rossi's mother, Margaret Rogers, who had flown in from Australia, reported Saturday night. Wedding plans have been in the works for months. In May, following the California Supreme Court's monumental ruling that same sex couple's have the right to marry, DeGeneres announced on her talk show that she intended to wed her girlfriend of nearly four years. In June, de Rossi debuted a marquis cut Neil Lane sparkler set with pink diamonds at the Daytime Emmy Awards. De Rossi said the first time she spotted DeGeneres, the comedian took her breath away. So congratulations women! I hope you have a very happy and successful marriage.

Anyone that has been paying attention to the Olympics in China knows about Michael Phelps winning the most gold medals ever and his phenomenal world records. But there has also been gold for two women for their third Olympics. Venus and Serena Williams of the United States have won the Olympic gold medal in womenís doubles. The Williamses beat the Spanish duo Anabel Medina Garrigues and Virginia Ruano Pascual, 6-2, 6-0 in Sundayís final. The American sisters, seeded second, shrieked when Ruano Pascual sent the championship point long. Then they jumped for joy and hugged each other. The Sunday win improves the sistersí Olympic record to 10-0 and gives them their second gold medal. The Williamses won the doubles event at the Sydney Games but didnít play Athens because Serena was hurt. So congratulations to the Williams sisters. You women rock!

Well that's about it for another day. How was your weekend? I hope you have a great week coming up. Remember to reach for the stars.

Wishing you health, hope and happiness.

Big bear hug,

Daddy Dab