Sunday, August 17, 2008

Somber Sunday

First off, Saints lost. But, for the record, their "3rd string" was in to play AND they didn't lose by much at all.
K, here is how my day went:
I had to go "across" the river to a meeting for my neices who are making their Confirmation in October. My sister and I are their "Sponsors." My BIL is the teacher, so it was interesting to say the least. It went well. After, my sis and I went to my other sister's house. Now, let me set the "scene" for you: Hurricane Katrina was 3 yrs ago. My sister, who's house we went to today, lost absolutely everything! The storm passed directly over their area. 30 foot storm surges! Her prior home is directly on the River Road and literally was, washed away! They did not receive a "FEMA" trailer until 8 mos AFTER the storm! Won't even discuss that! Anyway, she has 3 girls. It is such a trauma to have to go thru. I never thought my kids would have to experience anything like that! I was 3 when Camille hit and fortunately not around when Betsy came. But my Grandmother and parents have told us the stories. In fact, Katrina brought back memories and was FAR worse than the other 2. Anyhow, my sister has a new home. It is what they call a "Ready-built" home. It really is nice. Now, why they still live there, well...
So my younger sister and I went "sight-seeing." She actually made a visit about 2 mos after the storm, and it was/is "indescribable." She actually had to re-build her home after the storm, for a twister ripped the roof off her home and there was water damage and mold forming! She has now been in her home 2 yrs, in October. Took over a year to re-build.
We drove down the street where we used to live. {yeah, I lived there 4 yrs, graduating the same HS my Mom did!! Total fluke} It was depressing. NOT 1 single home remained! STILL! There were trailers and Mobile homes in their place. I was totally overwhelmed by what I saw. For the most part, it was "un-recognizable." We then headed toward our school. It was Kindergarten thru 12th grade. As we were driving up the road, we noticed that the company my grandfather worked and retired with, was totally GONE! This was a LARGE company. It was Freeport-McMoran Sulphur Company. He worked the elevator that loaded the ships on the river that came in. It was the reason they moved from Lafayette, LA to there, work! It was a GREAT Company to work for. Now it is just empty land. On to the school. We noticed that the only movie house was gone, the library was gone and the firehouse and police station GONE! Drove up the drive to the school. There were lots of "Mobile Houses" in place where there were regular houses that a lot of teachers lived in. Drove around the front to the entrance. First of all, I totally forgot to bring my camera, secondly, I'm GLAD I forgot my camera. Maybe later, I'll go back and take pics. I have some pictures someone sent to me, showing all the water in the Gym and how HIGH it was! All the windows were broken, bricks had crumbled, a very sad, sad sight. Drove around the back, right-side, toward our Civic Center. It was a total "shell" of a building. I didn't go any further toward our "Band-aid Station" as we called it as kids, the Hospital, because I know, nothing was there! We left and headed back up. Stopped and drove down where my grandmother had lived. Now, she sold her house many years ago and her and my Aunt built a lot further up the river. They were safe during the storm. Thank God! The 2 streets that backed up to each other were also, empty of homes. Only mobile homes, sporadically, were there. On her street, the only house that remained, was my great aunt's, her sister in law's house! Now, no one lived in it and I think, slowly, but surely, it was being rebuilt. A lot of places were gone. We wondered what the population now was? Now, this town was by no means a "happening place", in fact, we drove to "town" if we wanted to go to the Mall or movies or eat at an actual restaurant! It would take about 40 minutes to get there! Port Sulphur/Buras/Venice are considered "fishing/shrimping communities" and even that has been damaged! Now, I can't even fathom driving down any further than my sister's house, for, I may truly get upset! I saw pictures of Fort Jackson! That was where the "Orange Festival" always took place. It was also the place where we'd go when we'd "skip out" of school on "Senior Skip Out Day." It was also the local place where the kids in general would "hang out." Where our "Rival Team" would meet, reminding me of the kids on "Happy Days!" No kidding! Now all of that is gone. It is basically a "Ghost Town."
I am sorry to be so down in this post, but this is weighing heavily on me for some reason. This was where my mom and her sisters grew up in the late 50's. They had "Sock Hops" and other Dances at the high school, the same high school where they all graduated. The same high school that me and my sisters graduated from!!! There were actually 2 teachers still there that taught them and me!!! It truly is very nostalgic. Now, my children are growing up in a town very similar to where my mom grew up! My mom could/would walk to school! My kids can do the same. They do not "appreciate" it now, but hopefully in 10 years, they will! There aren't many places in this day and time, where kids can do that! We live in a very close knit community, where the term "It takes a village" applies! Now, we aren't totally closed off from the world. We know what is going on and so do the kids. Our guard isn't totally "let down" for we know, we are not "invincible." But it is nice to know, we can "relax" a little and enjoy life.
Okay, no pictures to add, not today. Just wanted to "reminisce" a bit, be a little "nostalgic", so, thank you. Thank you for letting me show this side of myself, become a little bare. I promise my next post will be livelier! Have a good Sunday evening. Blog ya later..............

1 comment:

Miss Dana said...

Hey girl!!!!
So, I didn't get a chance to post a blog........OR re-do it. Like I said I was gonna do, but didn't. Sorry, but I promise I'll do something do that boring blog of mine. LOL
Anyway, that must have been hard to see all the things that you remember all destroyed. Wow, I can't imagine!!!!! Is New Orleans still doing is it coming back? Sure hope it is!!
And how is your son liking his school??? It's almost been a week, right?!
Well, gonna go and get dinner started. Yay.....ha ha!
Have a great evening!