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This story is adapted from a BBC report dated 9 November 2019. THE PRESENT. In early November 2019, concurrent wildfires were raging in eastern Australia and California. This is unprecedented because its Spring in Australia and Fall in California – the wrong seasons for wildfires, let along wildfires that are this intense.

I was in Australia in August 2019 and reported on a massive drought that stretched from Sydney west into the state of South Australia. We saw no blade of green grass for two whole days of four-wheeling in the northern Flinders Ranges. We saw dozens of dead kangaroos by the roadside.… More

MARY ANN has had chronic pain for 30 years. Several lower back surgeries, neck fusion, fibromyalgia, RA (rheumatoid arthritis). On top of all this, she has to take oxygen all the time, and a C-PAP at night to help her sleep apnea. She has suffered more than anyone else I know.

In the past two years, her shoulders have caused joint pain, which became unbearable. Bone-on-bone said the orthopedic specialist. Surgery to replace her right shoulder was deferred twice due to a potential heart valve problem.

Mary Ann is a fighter and has remained remarkably positive while under all this duress.… More

This story is adapted from a BBC report by Matthew Ponsford dated 22 October 2019.

Recent research efforts using underwater remote operated vehicles (ROVs) has ventured below the Black Sea waters and revealed pieces of ancient history never before seen. They have discovered ships from several millennia of seafaring trade and war, including the world’s oldest intact shipwreck: a Greek trading ship from around 400 BC lying uncannily well-preserved on the seabed.

An English-Bulgarian team discovered the 2,400-year-old Greek trading ship last year, in addition to more than 60 other wrecks found in deep waters.

Appearing into view as the ROVs scanned the site, the ancient ship was lying on its side, the mast and rudder clearly visible as well as rowing benches and large ceramic containers in the hold.… More

WHEN PAIN IS SO BAD YOU CRY OUT IN THE NIGHT: My good friend Mary Ann lives in Kansas. She was having migraines when I got in on the story……pounding migraines that completely immobilized her. She could do nothing but go to bed. This went on for almost two months. The migraines appeared like clockwork….every three days.

During this time she discovered that Excedrin Migraine helped, and helped a lot…..two tablets took away the pain in about 30 minutes and she could function again. But Excedrin is a mix of Tylenol and aspirin and caffeine, and the aspirin can tear up your stomach.… More

I took a second trip while in Australia to north-east Queensland where the tropical forest and sugar-cane fields were totally green. And I saw a part of the Great Barrier Reef that is still very much alive. This is a new blog entitled Australia Part 2.

At the other end of the spectrum I had earlier taken a trip that landed me right in the middle of a terrible drought. Didn’t see a blade of green grass for two whole days. Sadly, just a lot of dead kangaroos. This was Australia Part 1 – click HERE to see previous blog.

WHERE DID WE STAY?… More

EARLY MEMORIES.

My earliest (ever) memory was telling mum that I didn’t want to die. I was scared. She comforted me.

The thing I remember best was mum’s perseverance in everything. She never gave up. She played tennis and ping-pong with the same determination. I actually recall the final point in a mixed doubles tennis tournament when she and a man called Paul Garnet won the title (I was probably 10 or 12 years old). I was very proud of her.

In our family car, mum conveyed me and my buddies to play football every Saturday when I was in high school.… More

AUSTRALIA IS IN THE GRIP OF A TERRIBLE DROUGHT. A month ago, I took a trip that landed me right in the middle of this drought. Didn’t see a blade of green grass for two whole days. Sadly, just a lot of dead kangaroos.

A second trip was at the other end of the spectrum: north-east Queensland where the tropical forest and sugar-cane fields were totally green. And I saw a part of the Great Barrier Reef that is still very much alive. This will be another blog — Australia Part 2.

The current great Australian drought is shown on the map.… More

WHATS IN THIS BLOG: • Victoria Gray, 34, from Mississippi has sickle cell disease. • A genetic defect deforms the red blood cells, causing terrible bouts of pain. • A new gene-editing treatment involves a grueling round of chemotherapy, weeks in the hospital, months of tests. • But there’s hope…

THERE WAS AN UPROAR OVER GENE-EDITING EXPERIMENTS carried out in November 2018 by Chinese biophysicist He Jiankui. He claimed to have done experiments on human embryos that resulted in twin girls whose DNA had been engineered to make them less susceptible to contracting HIV. The controversial experiments drew condemnation in China and internationally and led to the scientist’s firing from his University in January.… More

WHATS IN THIS BLOG: • Inspired by friends Kevin and Dorota. • Jesus defined two sides of loving. • Who is my neighbor? • What about today?

I RECEIVED AN EMAIL TODAY FROM FRIENDS KEVIN AND HIS WIFE DOROTA. It was an appeal for money to support a young nurse in her education. It was a GoFundMe format that my friends helped set up. Not only that, the nurse lived in Tanzania, in Africa. They are dreadfully short of nurses over there: only one for every 27 patients.

I found this individual effort inspiring — to help a young person, who is not well off and living in another country.… More

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