Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Move That Bus!

"Move that bus!" on 14 Nov 07. What a week and a once-in-a-lifetime event for my brother Patrick and his family, Patty, Patrick, Jesse, and Cameron. They were whisked off to England for a vacation while their home in Louisville was razed and replaced by a wonderful new home.
Shown here is a composite image of the new home under construction, and a local billboard congratulating the family and promoting the Extreme Makeover: Home Edition television show that paid for it all, and the home builder that did the work. The people of Louisville did themselves proud with the tremendous number of volunteers that pitched in to work; so many in fact that thousands were turned away.
The TV show is supposed to air on Sunday, 17 February, 2008, on ABC.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Only by the grace of God

The 2007 San Diego Wild Fires devestaded our neighborhood. Our house was spared, and is undamaged. Our family got out with minutes to spare, and are all unhurt.

On Sunday, 21 Oct, there was smoke in the air at lunch time. We got updates on the fires during the NFL games through Sunday. At midnight the news reported that the fires would enter San Diego through San Pasqual Valley about 1 AM. Since we live at the far end of the valley we started packing pictures and essential clothes. At 4 AM the sky had turned red and the wind was howling so we decided to get out. Fire engines and police cars were racing down our street. I went out to look and the sky was orange from the fires behind and to the right of our house. We loaded up the cars in a storm of ash and were out by 4:15 AM.
We went to LA knowing our neighborhood had burned. On Tuesday, 23 Oct, we received a report that our house had survived and others around us had not. On Wednesday, 23 Oct we had solid evidence that our house survived from web sites listing house status by address in our area.

On Thursday, 25 Oct, our neighboorhood opened up and we moved back in. It turns out that skylights leak ash. There were piles of black ash all around our house. The pool was full of it. The house behind us burned. The house in front of us burned. Most of the houses with shake roofs burned. Lots of stucco houses with tile roofs burned. Some of Sam's friends homes burned. Having a wooden deck looks like a bad idea. Spreading bark mulch around your foundation and yard looks like an invitation to fire. Having a cement patio is a good thing. Using lots of water to keep your yard green costs a lot, but seems like a good idea.

But mostly, having God decide to spare your place seems to be the key.
Here's a link to the Google Maps page with the fire symbols on or near homes that were destroyed in our area. We're on page 2.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Henry Arch Hughes, 8 Jul 29 - 11 Oct 07

At 3:55 EDT today, 11 Oct, 2007, my father Henry Arch Hughes died. God has ended his suffering and taken him from our presence to be with Him. Dad is now in heaven with his son, and my brother Joe, and my father's brothers and sisters who have gone before him. Dad's illness has caused me to miss him for a long time already. I truly loved him, and he has my thanks for helping me become a person of responsibility and morality.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

We Must Win

According to "Der Spiegel", this week "when [US] voters hit the ballot box in November 2008, they will be looking for more than just a candidate charismatic and clever enough to lead the country politically. They will also ask themselves which of the candidates is sufficiently tough, crafty and brutal to win the multi-front war that the Bush administration has begun."

Let's hope so.

Monday, April 09, 2007

A Nation at War?

"The U.S. is not at war. The military is at war." (Brig. Gen. Stephen Mundt) We are brandishing our sword, but we're not putting our might into the blows.

There's no "national sacrifice". The war is a TV event. It's not a war. No one here feels a threat. No one here is asked to pay more money, use less gasoline, work more hours, pack boxes of canned goods to send over seas. Nothing. "...the nation today is spending 3.9 percent of gross domestic product on the military and the war on terrorism, far below the level of national sacrifice during World War II (38 percent), the Korean War (14 percent), Vietnam (9.5 percent), the Reagan-era buildup (6.2 percent), or even the Clinton-era post-Cold War draw-down (4.8 percent)." (DoD)

A military draft, or a national service mandate, would be a good second step. Second to coughing up the treasure needed to equip and grow the services.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Orange Bowl Victory

What a great season for Louisville football this year. Capping it off was a hard fought win in the Orange Bowl tonight, 2 Jan 06. Great job guys!

UL Football Site: http://uoflsports.cstv.com/sports/m-footbl/recaps/010307aaa.html##

Here's a re-cap of the 12 and 1, 2006-2007 season:

09/03/06...Kentucky.......W, 59-28
09/09/06...at Temple......W, 62-0
09/16/06...Miami (FL).....W, 31-7
09/23/06...at Kansas St...W, 24-6
10/06/06...at Middle TN...W, 44-17
10/14/06...Cincinatti *...W, 23-17
10/21/06...at Syracuse *..W, 28-13
11/02/06...West VA *......W, 44-34
11/09/06...at Rutgers *...L, 25-28
11/18/06...USF *..........W, 31-8
11/25/06...at Pitt........W, 48-24
12/02/06...UConn..........W, 48-17
Orange Bowl
1/02/07....Wake Forest....W, 24-13