Another frosty morning. I didn't get any garden work done yesterday. Instead I had to drag stuff out of the shed so I could get to some of our winter auto supplies and at some garden tools I need inside over winter. Then I had to pack it all in again. In the process I found some water that shouldn't have been on the floor of the shed and traced the source. Got a bit of a surprise. We have a stock of de-icing salt in an old Tidy Cat tub and had a bit of salt in the original bag because it was (at the time) too much for the tub. We didn't use as much salt last winter as we expected so we still had a a small amount in the bag and hadn't touched the salt in the tub. I traced the water to the tub and found another puddle on the lid under the bag. Inside the bag I found no salt at all. We have had so much moisture this year that the salt absorbed the moisture to produce a brine solution. I have never had that happen here before. Thankfully the salt in the tub was fine and dry.
Well, the morning has mentioned a second (possible) case of ebola in Texas. A health worker who treated the first ebola patient has a low grade fever and has tested positive on a preliminary test. Only one story (and this isn't one of them) mentioned a second test to confirm the results of the first. Evidently, from other stories on the disease, false positives on the initial test are not uncommon. Actually I should correct my self just a bit--the story did say the test was "preliminary." What bothers me is the hype and hysteria I see in the news and comments. What ever happened to a bit of common sense in this country? Meanwhile, the enterovirus currently spreading across the country has sickened far more people (most children) but it has disappeared from the news unless a new death is associated with it--as happened for the second time over the last couple of days.
The Daily Mail has this article on the most deadly epidemics in history. As the commenter who linked to the article noted: ebola doesn't even come close to the worst cases. The "big four" (small pox, measles, Spanish flu and bubonic plague between them killed more than 750 million. The Nation also has a nice article on the current outbreak of ebola. Points to take away from the article: 1) the widespread belief in the medical community that we have "defeated" infectious diseases (we haven't), 2) the belief at WHO that this ebola outbreak was just like all the others (it wasn't and isn't) which led to 3) a slow response to warnings from the front lines that the disease was spreading uncontrollably.
And now for something different--simply because it is beautiful.