EMT’s Account of Saving a Cat From Smoke Inhalation

From Random Acts of Reality:

The call was given as ‘House fire – persons reported inside’, an interesting job. So at 1am in the morning we fly through the streets to find firefighters having just dowsed the fire that has wrecked a house. I spoke to their top man and he told me that they had checked the entire house and that there wasn’t any people inside.

It’s then that I looked down to see a firefighter on his knees giving oxygen to what I thought was a baby.

With a longer look I was extremely happy to see that it wasn’t a baby.

It was a cat.

The poor little soul was covered in soot and was having real trouble breathing – it was panting like a dog, and the rate of it’s breathing was incredibly fast. The firefighters were giving him oxygen and trying to keep him warm (as he’d been soaked by the firefighter’s hoses).

One of the firefighters seemed a bit upset, “Don’t lose him, we had a cat die on us last week”.

I let them know that we would take the cat.

‘Smoky’ the cat So we picked him up and took him into the back of the ambulance, the neighbours who’d all gathered to watch the show seemed bemused. Unfortunately the owners of the house couldn’t be found, so the cat had suddenly become my responsibility. We dried it off and gave it oxygen – in the picture you can see a McIlroy funnel which is used to give oxygen to neonates.

Lechuguilla Cave

Has anybody reading this ever visited Lechuguilla Cave?

Lechuguilla Cave is, as of 2006, the sixth longest cave (120 mi, or 193 km) known to exist in the world, and the deepest in the continental United States (489 m, or 1604 ft), but it is most famous for its unusual geology, rare formations, and pristine condition.

Lechuguilla Cave was known until 1986 as a small, fairly insignificant historic site in the park’s backcountry. Small amounts of bat guano were mined from the entrance passages for a year under a mining claim filed in 1914. The historic cave contained a 90-foot (27 m) entrance pit which led to 400 feet (120 m) of dry dead-end passages.[1]

The cave was visited infrequently after mining activities ceased. However, in the 1950s cavers heard wind roaring up from the rubble-choked floor of the cave. Although there was no obvious route, different people concluded that cave passages lay below the rubble. A group of Colorado cavers gained permission from the National Park Service and began digging in 1984. The breakthrough, into large walking passages, occurred on May 26, 1986.[1]

Since 1984, explorers have mapped 118 miles of passages and have pushed the depth of the cave to 1604 feet (489 m), ranking Lechuguilla as the 6th longest cave in the world (4th longest in the United States) and the deepest limestone cave in the country. Cavers, drawn by the caves’ pristine condition and rare beauty, come from around the world to explore and map its geology.

History of the Gadsden Flag

One of the first flags of the U.S.:

In fall 1775, the U.S. Navy was established to intercept incoming British ships carrying war supplies to the British troops in the colonies. To aid in this, the Second Continental Congress authorized the mustering of five companies of Marines to accompany the Navy on their first mission. The first Marines that enlisted were from Philadelphia and they carried drums painted yellow, depicting a coiled rattlesnake with thirteen rattles, and the motto “Dont Tread On Me.” This was the first mention of the Gadsden flag’s symbolism.

At the Congress, Continental Colonel Christopher Gadsden was representing his home state of South Carolina. He was one of three members of the Marine Committee who were outfitting the first naval mission. It is unclear whether Gadsden took his inspiration from the Marine’s drums, or if he inspired them himself.