May 16, 2008

May 16, 2008
Welcome back! For those of us on a Monday - Friday work or volunteer schedule, we've almost made it through another week. Thank God It's Friday!

I was up part of the night with my back again and really didn't get back to sleep well until around 5:30am so I slept until 10am this morning. Today it was overcast and very humid here in Jacksonville with a high in the mid 80s. Not exactly the warm beautiful sun shining days we usually have but any chance at rain would be welcomed with all the fires we have burning throughout Florida. We are very lucky in Jacksonville to not have any fires burning here currently. You could actually feel the humidity in the air when I walked outside this morning.

Gary said he woke up about 6am and couldn't get back to sleep so he started his day early. He already had half of our house cleaned when I woke up this morning. With his normal schedule wake up being 5am - 6am, Gary finds it very hard to sleep in on his days off from work. He is currently saving up for a moped to save on gas going back and forth to work. The two convenience store near us are currently selling a gallon of regular gas for $3.69 and premium is $4.09 a gallon. When I was a young man, I complained about gas when it went over two dollars a gallon and now I am completely amazed how quickly prices have risen in the past year to eighteen months.

Around 2pm today the skies started getting darker and we finally had brief showers for about thirty minutes but it wasn't really enough to soak the ground well. It stayed overcast until around 5pm when the really dark clouds and lightning started to roll in from the west. They started the weather warnings on the local channels in front of the storm because of the amount of lightning and wind. Luckily we had already ordered an early dinner from Larry's Subs and had it delivered. I had to rag on a business but I ordered the eggplant parmesan sub and in my opinion it wasn't very good. The sauce was bland and the eggplant breading was wet and soggy. I ended up only eating half of the sub. Now Gary got the Hot Stuff sub which is his usual order so he knew he would like it. I ended up finishing off the leftover lo mein noodles from the other evening.

I luckily am back in contact with an old friend from my home town Pensacola, Florida named Thom. Our families were friends since the 60s and we've known each other for most of my life. We went to the same church and my older brother and Thom knew each other growing up. I haven't been home to visit due to my schedule and speaking engagements but I need to go home soon and see my family and friends. Thom is also very good friends with another old friend, Monti who I haven't spoken to in some time since Monti shut down his internet connection and doesn't have email. I personally couldn't live without email in today's word but I admire someone who can.

On the world news, the death toll in Maynmar continues to climb with over 70,000 people now confirmed dead. The government says at least 43,318 people were killed and nearly 28,000 went missing when the May 2 - 3 cyclone turned the low-lying delta into a quagmire of shattered villages and squalid refugee camps ringed by fetid waters. The Red Cross fears the toll may be as high as 128,000; the U.N. estimates more than 100,000 died.

Then in China they have thousands of Chinese earthquake victims fleeing areas near the epicenter Saturday, fearful of potential floods from a river blocked by landslides. On CNN and our local news, the clips showed horrible living conditions and lack of aid being received in remote areas. There is also a lack of clean drinking water. Survivors were still being found under destroyed buildings five days after the quake.

I am headed to bed early tonight. Tired after getting up early this morning and the rain is lulling me off to sleep. I hope you have a great weekend! Wishing you health, hope and happiness.

Big bear hug,

Daddy Dab