Tuesday, 19 August 2008

Tuesday 19 August

Tropical storm Fay came ashore in the last hour near Cape Romano, 55 miles south of Ft Myers, FL. Maximum sustained winds were close to 60 mph, in other words not at hurricane strength. The system will move inland, northwards over the Florida peninsula, and reemerge over the open waters of the Atlantic by Thursday. A shift west will push it back inland and bring about its demise.

Currently, the main dangers from Fay lie in copious amounts of rainfall (up to 10 inches) and tornadoes. If you are in Florida, please continue to monitor output from NHC and NWS.

The weather in the Western Isles is grey, windy and cool. The mercury is at 15C / 59F, which is nearly 5 degrees C lower than yesterday. It should stay dry though - which is  a heartfelt wish of those in Northern Ireland, who have been awash in recent days.

I've studiously ignored the TV show Big Brother for the past couple of years, particularly after a horrendous series featuring Jade Goody opening her mouth too wide against an Indian filmstar. To make recompense for the perceived / alleged slight of racist behaviour, Ms Goody has recently appeared on the Indian version of Big Brother. Yesterday, Jade withdrew from the series after she was advised that she had been diagnosed with cervical cancer.

Whilst hoping that the cancer can be treated successfully in Jade, I also hope that Ms Goody will take the opportunity to use her celebrity status to raise awareness of cervical cancer, and the necessity to take a regular smear test. In the UK, 2,700 new cases of this cancer are diagnosed each year. It is the second most common form of cancer amongst women under 35.


  1. Well, I'm here in Central Florida watching the weather off and on.  Everything around us is closed today in anticipation -- government offices, schools, courts, etc.  But not the law firm where I work.  Oh, no, not them.  sigh........  Oh, well, at least I have a job!  And traffic will be light.  I just hate spending the gas if we don't work the whole day!  But I certainly have it much better than that young girl diagnosed with cervical cancer.  Prayers go out to her and all those who suffer.  Have a wonderful day, Linda

  2. I am so very sorry to hear that Jade has cancer. My thoughts and prayers have to go out to this young mother. May her treatment cure her.
    Hugs Jayne

  3. Yes, Florida is being hit hard with those large amounts of rainfall.   They needed some rain...but this is over the edge too much.  Hope it all calms soon...we were hoping to get some, but it turned and we will get none now.  Take care!!

  4. I recently got a text message from our JLand friend Robin & she's doing ok there in FL. Just has a migraine headache she's dealing with right now.  I've never watched "Big Brother" so am not familiar with Ms Goody.  But if she can spread the word about the dangers of not having regular exams, hopefully some others will be spared the agony of cervical cancer. Linda in rainy (very rainy) Washington

  5. So far my family and friends who live in Florida are doing well.  Hopefully it won't get any worse.

  6. I believe there is also an additional test that can be done at pap smear time that can indicate even more precisely the presence of HPV, one of the leading contributors of cervical cancer.  A vaccination is now out, also (you're likely aware), Gardasil, taken in 3 doses, that more and more US health insurance companies are covering (or being required to cover for girls).  Not full-proof and has some details, i.e., not applicable for everyone, but it'll help.  Wish boys could get this, too -- males tend to have no symptons yet can pass it along, unawares.

    I don't know Jade, probably glad I DON'T, but yes, I, too, hope that she can use her pseudo-celebrity status for raising awareness of this disease.  It can be a killer.

    Oh, and as for rain?  I agree that copious amounts really can be dangerous -- hope people take appropriate heed of that, also.