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Watercooler Stories

March 26, 2013 at 6:30 AM   |   Comments

Firefighters help mother give birth

WORCESTER, Mass., March 25 (UPI) -- Firefighters in Massachusetts said they responded to an emergency call at an apartment and ended up delivering a baby girl.

Worcester Deputy Fire Chief Geoffrey Gardell said three firefighters responded to a call Saturday night about a woman in labor and had intended to just wait with her until paramedics arrived, The Boston Globe reported Monday.

But the baby couldn't wait and the firefighters helped the woman give birth to a healthy girl, Gardell said. The mother and newborn were taken to the University of Massachusetts Memorial Medical Center.

Gardell said the delivery was a first for at least two of the three firefighters.


Baby water buffalo wanders away from farm

AUBURN, Ga., March 25 (UPI) -- A Georgia farm owner is asking people to be on the lookout for a 7-month-old water buffalo that wandered away from home.

Charlotte Cates, owner of Wilderness Farm in Auburn, said the water buffalo broke through the door of her stall and wandered off, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported Monday.

"She was brand new and I had her in the stall," Cates said. "She busted through the door and I guess she got spooked or something."

The animal, which Cates said looks like a baby cow, was last seen Saturday night crossing Georgia 316 in both directions. Cates said storms likely frightened the water buffalo away from returning to her new home.

"She's really skittish," Cates said. "She doesn't come to you when you call her, that's for sure."

Cates said her biggest worry is motorists not noticing the animal crossing the street.

"That's the main thing I worry about is that someone's not going to see her in time," Cates said. "I want to get her back so badly."


Chinese sailor nears end of world trip

QINGDAO, China, March 25 (UPI) -- A Chinese sailor who set off in November for a solo trip around the world is expected to complete his journey April 3, his support team said.

Guo Chuan, 47, crossed into the South China Sea last week, China's state-run Xinhua news agency reported Monday.

"I am closer and closer to [home], and it's the last stage I should be more careful of, especially the fishing nets," Guo said via satellite phone.

Guo dropped bottles into the water March 20, Jan. 19 and Dec. 4 with his contact information and a note about his world sailing attempt. Guo said he hopes someone will find the bottles and contact him.


'Hotel' offers the homeless experience

GOTHENBURG, Sweden, March 25 (UPI) -- A Swedish "hotel" is offering customers the chance to sleep in "rooms" including a dirty mattress under a bridge and a sleeping bag in a public park.

Faktum Hotels in Gothenburg said the $15-per-night accommodations, which it began offering in November, are designed to highlight the hardships facing the city's homeless population, The Local.se reported Monday.

"We asked several of our homeless contacts where they often slept, then we set up our rooms," said Aaron Israelson, editor of Faktum magazine, which runs the business. Faktum is sold on the street by poor and homeless in Gothenburg

The "rooms," which include a dirty mattress beneath a bridge, a sleeping bag in a park and a floor lined with newspaper at an abandoned mill.

"Few actually make it through the night and we had a very cold, harsh winter. But some really tried, with one woman managing to stay for about four hours," Israelson said.

Israelson said the aim of the project is not to make money.

"Our primary mission is to spread the word about the homeless situation in this city. Gothenburg is a tough place to be homeless," Israelson said.

Topics: newborn
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