The Working From Home Challenge

turned on laptop on bed
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Daily life has changed quickly–and dramatically–in the United States and around the world. The planet’s economies are trying desperately to keep going and forego the financial devastation that is being forecast.

Therefore, working from home is as good as it gets for many companies, big and small, to keep their workforce employed and their services and products available in the marketplace.

However, as more people are glued to their laptops and cellphones (yours truly included), there are a few things to keep in mind to maintain healthy, not only mentally, but also physically. Continue reading “The Working From Home Challenge”

Fear’s Nature

lion head
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Last week will remain in my memory for many years. Not because of the exponential raise of coronavirus Covid-19 cases around the world, nor the closing of the borders to contain its propagation.

This past week will remain in my memory because of the irrational reaction of millions of people on the face of this global threat: the purchase, in bulk, of toilet paper.

Watching pictures of empty shelves and endless lines outside of supermarkets are not new to me. On the contrary, they are a reminder of our annual hurricane season in Florida, the state where I reside. Continue reading “Fear’s Nature”

The mystery behind Leap Year

birthday wallpaper
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The media bombarding about Coronavirus or COVID-19 these days is practically impossible to escape. Nevertheless, I tried diverting my attention by reading about other subjects, such as the mystery behind the Leap Year.

Planet Earth’s tour around the Sun actually takes 365.25 days, not 365. Therefore, every four years, the second month has an extra day called Leap Day. In other words, February 29th is a surplus, and to be born on a day like this is definitely special.

According to the History Channel, only five million people have been born on this day,  making the odds equivalent to 1 in 1,461 babies.

Continue reading “The mystery behind Leap Year”

The Coronavirus’ patient profile

two test tubes
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Writer’s note: This blog has been updated on February 24th to show the cases data increase since the original publishing date, February 16th, 2020.


The Coronavirus–recently renamed COVID-19–epidemic maintains its grip on China. Based on the latest data released by the World Health Organization, the numbers continue to be alarming. However, Chinese officials changed the reporting criteria of Coronavirus cases this past week .

Therefore, patients who exhibit the symptoms such as fever, cough, and shortness, but have not been tested or tested negative, are now included under the new category “clinical cases”.

Let’s take a look at these reports from WHO. To read the daily report click here. Continue reading “The Coronavirus’ patient profile”

Coronavirus: Stay informed, and don’t panic

chinese guardian lions
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Last night, I enjoyed a plate of Chinese food while I read a article about the spread of the coronavirus designated 2019-nCoV. An ironic coincidence I have to admit.

JAMA online (The Journal of the American Medical Association) published two articles last week to explain this epidemic. One refers to the cordon sanitaire–sanitary cord in English–the public health measure taken by the Chinese government on January 23rd.

This measure restricted all transportation–land, air, and waterways–to and from the city of Wuhan, where 11 million people live, as well as over 15 other cities in the province of Hubei.

Additionally, the large cities Beijing and Hong Kong have cancelled the majority of public events, as well as classes for schools and universities, until at least the middle of February.

To illustrate the state of affairs in this Asian giant, imagine the population of California, Oregon, and Washington State combined tied under the measure and Los Angeles County as the epicenter of the epidemic. Continue reading “Coronavirus: Stay informed, and don’t panic”

The Vanishing

Rio Magdalena
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Last Friday, I met with the jurors of the creative writing contest at my son’s elementary school; I have sponsored this event for the past three years. In the fourth grade stories’ pile, there was one handwritten in blue ink. The title was “Carito“–short for Carolina in my home country, Colombia.

Immediately, I remembered the name of a famous song and thought: “I bet this is has something to do with Colombia.” I was right. Continue reading “The Vanishing”

Sing when you are up to your neck in mud

green leafy plant starting to grow on beige racks
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Two days ago, I watched a viral commencement address by Naval Admiral William H. McRaven at the University of Texas in 2014. The title of the speech is, “Change the World.” The voice and demeanor of the Admiral in uniform–besides the numerous medals on his chest–are an unmistakable display of leadership.

Nonetheless, what moved the audience that day, and continues to awe people worldwide on the internet, are his words and the essence of his message. This is my favorite part:

If I have learned anything in my time traveling the world, it is the power of hope. The power of one person, a Washington, a Lincoln, King, Mandela, and even a young girl from Pakistan, Malala. One person can change the world by giving people hope. So, if you want to change the world, start singing when you are up to your neck in mud.” (Click here to watch the full video) Continue reading “Sing when you are up to your neck in mud”