Welcome back. Thanks for joining me in my last blog entry for June 2008. I hope you have had a great month. I can not believe we are now half way through 2008.
It was storming in Jacksonville for most of the day which made for a great napping day. I was up early around 6am this morning. Chipper had started barking because he is used to Gary being up that early. Chipper was ready to go outside and have his breakfast. So being the great father I am, I got my tired butt up and took care of my kids. After I got them settled, I emailed Gary a good morning note to start off his day with a smile. I know from talking to him last night he is ready to be back home which was nice to hear. Private time is great to have once in awhile but you realize how much you care about someone when they are gone for a week or more.
I received a call from Heather around lunch time to let me know a friend of ours had been in a horrible motorcycle crash. Her new husband was killed and Vicki was critically injured when the motorcycle they were riding overturned several times in a Marion County crash. Jeffery David Waldron, 43, died in the accident Sunday on County Road 484 two miles east of Florida 200, according to the Florida Highway Patrol. Waldron and Vicki Renae Hitzing, were westbound on a curve when the motorcycle drifted onto the road shoulder and overturned shortly after 5 p.m. Now I have known Vicki for almost two years and she has served for many years helping the HIV and AIDS community of Jacksonville. This year, we both serve on the local World AIDS Week Committee. While it is horrible for anyone being in this kind of life changing accident, it pains me to know a wonderful woman like Vicki is struggling to stay alive. So please keep her in your thoughts and prayers as I will be doing. I will let you know when I hear more.
In our presidential election news, there was almost another Democratic gaff. Democrat Barack Obama rejected a retired general's suggestion that Republican John McCain's military experience didn't necessarily qualify him to be president, as GOP surrogates lined up to label the remarks indecent and disrespectful. A day after retired Army Gen. Wesley Clark, now an Obama supporter, discussed McCain's experience as a Navy pilot and prisoner of war in Vietnam on a Sunday talk show, his remarks set off the pattern that has become familiar from innumerable earlier flaps over surrogate remarks during the presidential election year: The candidates, Obama and McCain, took the high road while the bare-knuckled language was left to their surrogates. Almost every news channel I turned on today was running the story. It is amazing how they will pick every little issue apart ad nauseum. It just shows what the next few months are going to be like until the election is over. Right now the polls have Obama ahead if the elections were held today. Both Obama and McCain are headed to Iran on what I think are publicity campaigns.
I spoke with Gary a couple of time this evening. He is hoping to be back in Jacksonville around 9pm tomorrow evening if everything works out with his transfer in Savannah, Georgia. I would hate to be them if they say they don't have enough room on the bus like they did on his trip up there. I hope he was able to accomplish his goals while being there. I know some issues can not ever be resolved and have to be accepted for what they are. Now he just needs to realize and accept that fact which I think he is starting to do. I know the dogs miss him like crazy and will be going spastic as soon as they realize he is back home.
Now for the latest news on crude oil and gasoline prices. Oil prices surged past $143 a barrel for the first time ever Monday, and the price for a gallon of gas hit an all-time high in the United States. Supply concerns and a fragile global economy continue to drive the price of oil to new highs, as well as continued tensions in the Middle East. The European Central Bank may raise interest rates at its next meeting on Thursday, a move that would help strengthen the euro against the dollar. Light, sweet crude for August delivery rose $3.46 to $143.67 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange, by midday in Europe. Those prices fell to $142.17, but a barrel was still up $1.96 in early trading. On Friday, crude futures spiked to a record $142.99 a barrel in New York before closing at $140.21. At the pump, meanwhile, U.S. gas prices continued to climb, reaching a national average of $4.086 a gallon, according to a survey of stations by AAA, the Oil Price Information Service and Wright Express. Gas prices last hit a record on June 16 when a gallon of gas cost $4.08. Over the weekend, Iran's Revolutionary Guards warned that Tehran would respond to an attack against it by barraging Israel with missiles and controlling a key oil passageway in the Persian Gulf. In London, Brent crude futures rose $2.09 to $142.40 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange in London. Analysts said daily trading volumes for Nymex oil would probably continue last week's trend and stay on the light side, leading to higher volatility during the trading sessions. I will be writing more about the effects of the increased gas prices more tomorrow.
I called Diane around 10pm this evening since we have not talked in two or three days. Just wanted to catch up and make sure she hasn't had any more heart problems. Her brother and his new wife were just up for a visit this past weekend. Larry's wife also travels to Mississippi to see her daughter when they drive to Pensacola for a visit. Diane's nephew is leaving his job and going to come see them for about a week after he has finished his resignation period. I know both Diane and her mother are very excited about getting to spend more than one or two days with Mark. I started getting very sleep so I wished her well and told her I would call again in a few days.
Getting ready to head off for bed now. Hope you had a great day also.
Wishing you health, hope and happiness.
Big bear hug,