Saturday, August 29, 2009

august 29th...

it was four years ago today. we were living in reno watching our beloved new orleans get slammed by a cat 4 hurricane called 'katrina'. the next morning, after it blew by, there was a profound feeling of relief... it looked as though we had missed the bullet. the t.v. was showing various parts of town, and while there was a lot of wind damage, it wasn't as bad as what we were seeing from mississippi.

...and then it came, but it didn't come in a huge wave through the city, it crept up like a big black snake slithering out of the swamp.

and it didn't stop coming til the bowl that is new orleans was full.

we sat 1800 miles away from our true home watching in horror as the devastation and desperation unfolded, helpless to do a damn thing but cringe. the shock turned to anger as the days dragged on and the city was left to it's own devises. five unbearable days we watched as thousands of people hung on waiting for help. many of our friends and relatives were in that mass of abandoned souls.

...and we could only think that could be us.

we had a house in metry to worry about, the one in which this is written, but that was of no concern, (it got flooded and is a whole 'nother story). the complete disregard in which the government, on all levels, handled the plight of so many americans infuriated us to no end. the media portrayed the city as out of control and lawless while showing vandals and looters pillage and plunder. there was no calvary on the horizon, except for the coast guard that worked tirelessly to snag people stuck on roofs.

the whole world was witness to the worst man made disaster on american soil and it wasn't pretty. new orleans was left to drown through a series of disasters that started long before the hurricane. to blame katrina alone is to only repeat the catastrophe again in the future. from the original engineering of the levees to the botched relief and rescue effort, even the rebuilding, it seems no one has ever really cared.

no wonder this town is called 'the city that care forgot'

so, here we are four years later. there are still people who will never be able to return to the city they love, probably too many to count. it really was a sort of diaspora, the refugees were flung all over this country. the rebuilding plods along like an old dog on a hot august afternoon, meandering with no destination or purpose, and no reason to do it fast. there are some signs of life, the quarter, the western suburbs, across the lake, but overall it is pretty disheartening.

still, i hear were winning the war in iraq...

we're a tough breed here, after all, and the music, food and culture is what makes this place so wonderful. it's the best damn spot on earth, even 5 feet below sea level. so... here's a few songs, in mp3, from the big easy to make this anniversary go down a bit smoother...
well, them and a couple of large stiff shots.


(for as long as a week via yousendit)

david bartholomew - who drank my beer while i was in the rear

dr. john - junko pardner

lee dorsey - who's gonna help brother get further?

the wild tchoupitoulas - meet the boys on the battlefront

the dukes of dixieland - do you know what it means to miss new orleans?

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42 Comments:

Blogger sonicfrog said...

Wait till California has its big quake, then everyone will really forget about New Orleans.

PS. My blog has been down for five days now. I think I'll be changing hosting services.

2:30 PM CDT  
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2:37 AM CST  
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3:40 AM CDT  
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THE FINE PRINT!
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