Today was eventful. We drove down into Plaquamines Parish from Venice to Buras. It is eye-opening to see the residual damage that is still visual all of these years later. Every time I come to Louisiana, I have a new found an appreciation for what the people in this area are and have gone through. From the vehicle that is still stuck in the water in the wetlands, to the homes in various stages of disrepair, to the spoken words from the survivors that ring true after surveying the landscape all over the state. As of today, I have been to all areas of Louisiana and the picture is the same…various stages of damage and/or total destruction still evident in certain areas. The one thing that I have always found that really pulls on my heartstrings is the fact that everyone that I have talked to still has the hope, the fortitude, and the resilience that things will turn around and that this situation will NOT get the best of them!!
SO, we ended day #3 at Snug Harbor with some great food, people, conversations about everything under the sun, and awesome music. I had an amazing conversation with Bryce and Damion Neville before the performance about New Orleans and Louisiana before, during, and after Katrina. Every time that I hear another person’s perspective on what transpired on and after the dreadful day I cannot help but wonder why this can happen in this great country of ours. Why is that that OVER 5 YEARS after Katrina made landfall there are still areas that do NOT have hospitals??? Or schools that have never reopened??? Or entire neighborhoods that haven’t been rebuilt??? I am sorry but I cannot even begin to wrap my head around those facts or why this can happen in America!! Where is the national outcry that injustices are being done right here in America??
I have heard so many people say that they don’t understand why the New Orleanians went so crazy about the Saints winning the Super Bowl….that is easy! In an area that has suffered through Katrina and Rita (are various other issues…yes, BP being a huge one), so much negative news media, every type of government failure from city, state, parish, and federal, and the list goes on and on…why would they not want to bask in the hope and splendor of their team showing the entire world that the New Orleans area (and the entire population of the Gulf Coast) and its people may have been down but the will NOT allow themselves to be kept there by anyone.
The spirit and resilience of the people in Louisiana and the Gulf coast region is impressive. A good friend just recently told me that with all of the media attention going to the New Orleans area that the nation forgets that there are other areas throughout the Gulf Coast region that were hard hit too. One of those areas is Buras, LA in Plaquamine’s Parish. Thank you Cynthia for giving my your brother’s number so that I can call him today.
More to come…
NOLA DAY #3 Buras, LA October 11, 2010
This morning we will be heading to Plaquemine’s Parish. Plaquemines Parish is the “toe of the boot” shaped Peninsula that juts out into the Gulf of Mexico below New Orleans. Buras, LA is where Katrina first came ashore on August 29th, 2005. Katrina brought a 28 foot Tsunami-type storm surge that hit this area dead on. The pictures that I have seen from this area right after the storm had the goose bumps raising on my arms!! It looked like ground zero of a war zone.
We are heading out the door so there will be more to come later….