Saturday, November 12, 2005

there and back again

jeesh, where to begin? i finally feel up to posting in here after s.a. complained about a definite lack of activity on my part (the jaunt just left me broken, tired and lazy).
it's been a pretty hectic few weeks for us, what with the trip to new orleans and back, kimmy havin' a baby and all that goes with that ...

the drive to the easy was, well, easy. s.a. and i tag-teamed our way across the country, making good time and enjoyed wonderful weather until the last push from okc. the sunny days turned grey, nasty and very sierra-like all the way to metry. and then the cold swept into the city as we did, and stayed the whole time, much to my pain and dismay.
the wreckhouse was still standing, altho the ground floor had the drywall and carpets stripped and the yard was a mess of broken trees and debris. there's nothing in the house but what we dragged down from reno, so we slept on a matress on the floor of our empty new master bedroom (that sucker's huge!) and watched t.v. on a silly little $20 b&w set we bought at a gas station (it paid for itself that week). it seems we spent nearly the whole time talking with adjusters, electricians, plumbers, painting and cleaning upstairs and looking for stuff to replace the whole kitchen (that was s.a.'s favorite part, she shopped for countertops and ovens while i just tagged along nodding and playing my harmonica up and down the aisles of lowe's and home depot).

the first thing we noticed in metry was the amount of traffic and number of small signs. signs are on every street and pole. signs for everything from mold removal, house gutting and clean-up to oriental take-out masseuse services and hair replacement. but most of the signs were for help wanted. it seems every open buisness was looking for workers. and a lot of places had signs reminding you they are open, but the sign with the establishment's name was long gone. very strange ...
and the place is more crowded than i can remember. just getting around is a nightmare, every main street is packed with people going somewhere usually following a line of trash trucks or construction equipment

the only time we went into the city was when my sister jan, s.a. and i drove into lakeview to see angel and jacques's house. it was not a pretty scene. as soon as you cross into new orleans over the 17th st canal on veterans blvd it becomes very , very surreal. there is absolutely no color, just a dusty grey covering everything. it is block after block of total destruction; a pile of trash 2 stories high on west end blvd, everywhere you look are wrecked houses with water-lines to the roof, cars strewn about like discarded toys and trees ripped up and uprooted. poor angel's house was a complete mess. the house is wide open and all their stuff is covered with caked mud and mold. the saddest thing was seeing all of jacque's wondeful paintings rotting in the heat.
the only way to lift our spirits after the dismal lakeview tour was to head to the french quarter and find po' boys and bloody marys, which we did at cafe mespero's (we made a toast to ya danno!).

while we were there we didn't get out much, not a whole lot of places are open and those that are run at about half-speed, but things seem to be getting better.
all in all, it was not as bad as i thought it would be. but there is still an unreal amount of trash lining every street in metry. and the damage varies from house to house ( jan's neighborhood had no flooding at all, there's just a lot of 'blue roofs' and tree damage). but we came home feeling a lot better about the future than when we left, and we really love that big ol' freaky house.
my good friend tim has been back in the parish for awhile now and is posting some great stories on his myspace blog, 'tim's nameless blog', about what it's like living in metry on a daily basis. a very interesting read.

but metry is a distant memory since we got back. kimmy was still preggers and miserable the whole week and finally, last saturday, she gave birth to little payton. me, being much too old and never having expereinced the whole process up close and personal-like before, i was just mortified. just sitting in the room i got all nervous and twitchy every time she went into contractions. i was kinda glad to be sent from the room, i don't know how dad's can do it at all. inside i was a wreck, but i put on my brave face for the girl's benefit. kimmy is a real trooper. she just took it all in stride and pulled it off just like the book said to (she read 'em all first). the kid is cute as a puppy and so far is being very good. oh boy, it's gonna be strange and wonderful to have a little guy growing up in the wreckroom ... (i can't wait to put some drum sticks in his little hands, the band needs a good drummer).

a bit of house music on mp3:
paul mccartney - i love this house
maddness - our house (12 inch mix)
the beta band - the house song
prince - housequake
crosby, stills and nash - our house

(and the kick drum is the fault ...)

i dunno if anyone else has seen this, (i am sorta out of the loop lately) ... pete townshend, (yes, the same one), has his own blog, 'the boy who heard music' and is dropping chapters from a new project along with some demo mp3s. and he even has the comments open, worth a look see for sure.
also, i got an e-mail from a wendy williams (no, not that one) at advising us that the w'room should post the new xtc tune 'spiral'. they have a very cool site posting a bunch of free, legal downloads from a vast assortment of bands. we especially love it that they have quite a few videos available that we have never seen. nice, nice, very nice!

an mp3 of pete's 'in the ether'

and some mp3s from
xtc - spiral
spoon - i turn my camera on
the clientele - e.m.p.t.y.


Blogger J. Marquis said...

Dude, nice to see a post from you. Glad you had a good trip and congrats on the new little Wreckreator!

5:49 PM CST  
Blogger Benny said...

Yeah! So lovely to see you again! Cute kid-- supercongrats! :-)


7:03 PM CST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Glad you're back bloggin, we missed you.

Thanks for the plug! "Tim's Nameless Blog" might one day have as many readers as "The Wreckroom" does. (not likely)

Welcome to the show, baby Payton, and best wishes to you with the reconstruction. Come back to New Orleans soon! We need people like you!


10:19 PM CST  
Blogger sonicfrog said...

'Bout time you came back to us! Just got back from a gig in Tulare (40 mi away). It's pushing 1 am and I'm tired and going to bed. God, am I getting old or what???

2:48 AM CST  
Blogger Laurie said...

I was so happy to see a post this morning. Sounds like you had an amazing trip. Congratulations on the baby. Thanks for the link to Tim's blog. It made me cry. I'm going to link to him on my blog.

12:14 PM CST  
Blogger Danno said...

Great to see you're back M.A., and to see things are coming together, I've missed your posts buddy. Congrats on the new addition to the house, a good drummer is hard to find, cute kid! I love Mespero's, they still have the round Po' Boys? I usually end up there for my last meal in the city, I don't know how or why it happens, it just does. Thanks for the toast.

12:54 PM CST  
Blogger dickvandyke said...

There you are - you old goat.

'May you live in interesting times' is that old Chinese proverb. Well, perhaps 'just a bit less fucking interesting for a few years thank you very much' would be just the ticket for you all down there! I mean - legs up with a book and a drink wouldn't go amiss.

Do you know when a baby is first born and folk ask, 'Who does he/she look like?' Well, I used to reckon that all crinkly newborns look like Winston bloody Churchill; but that there little un is as cute as a milk chocolate button.

Into a bright tomorrow!

Yours from olde England ... DVD.

(With a further helping of 'lashings of respect'

PS - More about "The Wife" situation later. Honest.

2:29 PM CST  
Blogger nostradumass said...

i'm glad sa made you post--the universe seems more in balance...

congrats to kimmy and i'm glad the metry wreck-house didn't get too... uh... wrecked...

anyway, glad you made it back and hope to read more as the dust settles.

6:19 PM CST  
Blogger Jen T. (that's me) said...

welcome back! I was wondering what happened to you!!! :)

12:19 PM CST  
Blogger Snave said...

Congratulations on the new arrival!

Glad you are back at home, safe and sound. Your pictures are amazing...

10:39 PM CST  
Blogger Helskel said...

Hey Sleepy!

good to see ya back...

the cycle of loss and renewal goes on eh?

hope everything is turning up

11:11 AM CST  
Anonymous johnno said...


Welcome back, I've been illegally squatting from time to time, spinning some disks and reading words of wisdom.

You may find that the Wreckroom is short of a few cookies in the pantry....... I big guy like me gets kinda hungry from time to time.......

Oh yeah, sorry about the herb garden too. I tried to look after it, but there was a rainbow caterpillar plague and god dangit, blow me down and call me a stovepipe if they didn't get the lot.

And thanks for the Noo Orleeeans update, I'm glad there's a sort of normalacy returning to the place.

5:28 AM CST  

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