May 12, 2008

May 12, 2008
Thanks for joining me again. It's another beautiful day in north Florida with great temps and partly cloudy skies.

We were still having the same high wind gusts as yesterday until about sunset when things calmed down. Last night in south Georgia about 50 miles from us, they had two tornadoes which caused a lot of damage and a couple of deaths. There were several emergency warnings on television late last night since they are in our broadcasting area. My heart go out to the victims. I've lost my possessions because of an earthquake while living in San Francisco in the late 80s and then by a flood in north Florida in the mid 90s so I can empathize with what they are currently going through. Wondering how they are going to start over from scratch if they did not have insurance to cover their loses.

Speaking of disasters, more than 10,000 people were killed in a devastating cyclone that hit western Burma over a week ago. Their government has stated they were ready to accept international assistance. Aid shipments are now being held at port instead of being to the locals.

Thousands of survivors of Cyclone Nargis are lacking shelter, drinking water, power and communications. The United States offered to increase aid offered if Burma agreed to allow a US team access to assess the situation. First Lady Laura Bush, who takes a special interest in Burma, urged Burma to accept $250,000 already allocated for emergency aid, and said more would be available if the team was allowed into the country. Mrs. Bush also accused the Burmese authorities of failing to give a "timely warning" about the approaching storm, after which five regions - home to 24 million people - have been declared disaster zones.

If the toll is confirmed, Nargis is now the world's deadliest storm since a 1999 cyclone in India killed 10,000 people. Nargis hit the south-east Asian country on Saturday with wind speeds reaching 120mph. It brought with it a sea surge that smashed through towns and villages. The towns of Bogalay and Laputta, in the region of Irrawaddy, are among those locations particularly badly hit, state media have reported.

Then last night nearly 10,000 people were killed by the earthquake that hammered southwest China. Rescuers worked frantically through the night, pulling bodies from schools, homes, factories and hospitals that were demolished by the 7.8 magnitude quake, which rippled from a mountainous area of Sichuan province across much of China on Monday afternoon.

The toll from China's worst earthquake for over three decades appeared sure to climb as troops struggled on foot to reach the worst-hit area, Wenchuan, a hilly county of 112,000 people 62 miles from Sichuan's provincial capital, Chengdu. About 900 teenagers were buried under a collapsed three story school building in the Sichuan city of Dujiangyan.

Communist Party leadership announced that coping with the devastating quake, and ensuring that it did not threaten social stability, was now the government's top priority. Officials must speed food, water, medicine and other necessities to quake-stricken areas, the meeting ordered, adding that officials must keep a grip on social stability.

So while I'm always concerned about things in the United States, I also care what happens in other countries. We are all part of the human race and deserve no less.

On the personal front, I had my monthly massage with Vicki which I was needing desperately. My legs and back have been killing me lately and massage greatly helps with those problems. Vicki and I always have a great time talking current events and politics while I am getting my massage which is an extra bonus and it is always great to see her.

Gary and I had a low key night at home. After a dinner of NY strip steaks and macaroni and cheese, we watch the semi-finals of Dancing With the Stars. It was a good episode but I've seen better dances on previous shows. Hopefully the finals will be better. My favorite is Jason Taylor who is also a professional football player. He is a good dancer and gorgeous to watch. Kristi Yamacuchi is also a great dancer, past olympic champion and in the top two of the competition.

Getting ready to head to bed. Hope you had a great day and remembered to take time for yourself. Wishing you health, hope and happiness.

Big bear hug,

Daddy Dab