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All about Ida | Morning Newsletter

And, a miraculous rescue.

    The Morning Newsletter

    Start your day with the Philly news you need and the stories you want all in one easy-to-read newsletter

Good morning, everybody.

It looks as if Hurricane — turned tropical storm — Ida’s leftovers are going to track close to Philadelphia, threatening the region with widespread heavy rains and perhaps the most significant flooding along the Delaware River in a decade, forecasters warn. We’ll start with what to brace yourselves for first.

And last week, my buddy Tommy told you about the Quaker mission to rescue an Afghan refugee. The story has taken an encouraging turn.

OK, let’s get into it.

— Ashley Hoffman (@_AshleyHoffman,

Starting at 8 a.m. Wednesday, all of eastern Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and northern Delaware will be under a 36-hour flood watch, declared by the National Weather Service. The potential extent of the rainfall dump? Three to 6 inches of rain in some areas, with the pummeling ending by Thursday morning. Look no further than the South for the full order of Ida’s impact, where the storm blacked out a region.

Downpours have been hit or miss in our region as the end of summer nears, with mostly sun-dappled weekends. But look no further than the official rain gauge at Philadelphia International Airport — known to play a mean game of dodgeball with raindrops — that captured 3.17 inches on Saturday, an Aug. 28 record.

Ever the clear window into the rest of the week, Anthony R. Wood has the full report, so keep reading for all about Ida.

“One man, one life, one future, plucked from the violence of Kabul and from direct Taliban death threats, airlifted to safety on a giant C-17 military plane. One man who worked years for the American forces, rescued by peaceful Quakers who wouldn’t give up even when hopes fell, and by the ex-military officers, Army leaders, Pennsylvania elected officials, and nonprofit groups that jumped in to help in this country and that one,” so begins reporter Jeff Gammage’s story on the Philly Quaker congregation effort that rescued an Afghan interpreter from his homeland.

Bashir befriended David DiFabio, an Air Force veteran, when the Quaker was a civilian communications contractor in Afghanistan. Bashir worked with U.S. armed forces at the Kandahar air base for more than a decade, but his visa paperwork — which came with several recommendations from military supervisors — apparently was rejected because of an error that undercounted his years of service, leaving him stranded. (At least 300 interpreters and family members have been killed in recent years because of their ties to the United States.)

In Plymouth Meeting, about 25 people gathered at the Meetinghouse this past weekend to worship and share how relieved and grateful they felt for everyone who stayed the course to bring Bashir to safety. Keep reading for the whole story of friendship.

We have withheld Bashir’s full name for safety reasons.

Reopening resources

  1. Here is a full list of restaurants, large performance venues, universities, and gyms in the Philly region where you need to show proof of vaccination.

  2. Should you laminate your vaccination card? What if you lose it? Here are the dos and don’ts.

  3. Here’s what you need to know about medical exemptions.

  4. It could be time to upgrade your face gear. Which masks work best?

What you need to know today

  1. Philly teachers’ contracts are down to the wire this week as 120,000 students are going back to that not-normal school year we told you about yesterday.

  2. And reporter Kristen Graham spoke to Superintendent William R. Hite Jr. for a one-on-one interview to bring us closer to this story.

  3. Nearly 1,000 Afghanistan evacuees have landed in Philly, with hundreds more expected Monday.

  4. Were you affected by Wawa’s data breach? Here’s how to get a gift card or cash.

  5. Speaking of “what we need to know” very crucially, our local hospitals are uncertain which patients are vaccinated and which are not. Blame Philly’s fractured record keeping.

Through your eyes | #OurPhilly

I just braved this Ferris wheel with coworkers, and it’s as if Penn’s Landing watched Beyoncé's XO music video once and turned it into a lifestyle.

Tag your Instagram posts with #OurPhilly, and we’ll pick our favorite each day to feature here and give you a shout-out.

That’s interesting

🧘 There’s a reason why rest days are important, and here’s how to maximize your time off.

🦅 The Eagles activate Rodney McLeod and Landon Dickerson off injury lists. Let’s look at the roster.

🏘️ Rents are up in Philly and nationally. And they’re expected to keep rising.


“This situation is pervasive. Some dog owners don’t pick up after their dogs and then there are those who do but then toss the filled plastic bags on the sidewalk. Philadelphia, in particular, is dirty enough without inconsiderate pet owners making things worse,” columnist Jenice Armstrong would like Philly’s dog parents to pick up after their pooches.

  1. Let this Philly doctor tell you why he’s now just as fearful of the delta variant as he was of COVID-19 in March 2020.

  2. “Show us, don’t tell us, that you value and respect us, and that you believe that the students we serve deserve to have the tools and resources they need to thrive. A fair contract is a belief in and commitment to public education,” PFT building representatives Sharahn Santana and Ivey Welshans write about why the School District should raise wages.

What we're reading

  1. About everyone’s favorite high-dysfunctioning royal family, New York magazine profiles the cast of Succession.

  2. It’s the return of quinceañera dress season on WHYY.

  3. Reuters reports on Haiti’s food insecurity crisis after the earthquake.

  4. Sports Illustrated looks at the future of female wrestling.

  5. In case you missed it, BuzzFeed has gathered unforgettable contributions to the milk crate challenge.

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