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Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Masher88, Aug 29, 2007.
So, besides the news stuff...how's it holding up? How are the conditions? Any TBers wanna chime in?
Yeah I'd like to know too. We were flooded with images on the TV and in the papers when it happened, and then it just fell silent. I'm really curious to know what's going on. My guess is that very little has been done and the place is still a tragic mess... but I hope that's not true
Has Kanye West calmed down yet?
My sister just moved back into her house last week, so it took almost 2 years for her and her family to go "home". She's in Slidell, which as mike v_s will tell you took some SERIOUS damage from Katrina directly, not as a result of levee failure days later. Slidell is considered "high ground" in south Louisiana. My dad & sister lived 2 blocks apart, they were 9 feet above sea level, got 6+ feet of saltwater in their homes. Dad lives in Orlando now, didn't have the heart to rebuild after that and losing mom less than 6 months prior.
No one really seems to be focusing attention on the areas outside of New Orleans, where the damage was MUCH greater. Very sad everywhere.
It was a wonderful place, and now it will take decades to really completely recover.
Yep, decades is about right. Rebuilding everything and getting everything back to normal is a huge task. And then, sadly, there is nothing to say that there won't be more storms in the area.
Some is back to the pre-Katrina norm. Others are FAR from it. Anyone who lives on the water are facing being dropped by their insurance, if they haven't already, or their rates going up by at least 100%. There's still plenty of people w/ blue FEMA tarps on their roof in some areas around here. The first Katrina-related insurance lawsuit for Alabama was tried here about a month ago. Around the city, things are back to normal. In the poorer fishing/shrimping towns along the coast, there are still WAY too many people in those dangerous FEMA trailers.
I was at a Federal courthouse over in Gulfport a few weeks ago. Two blocks from the water, there was one hell of a view from the 10th floor! Unfortunately, there wasn't anything to look at. There are still LOTS of buildings that are little more than shells in downtown Gulfport, which is sad, because there is some terrific 19th-century architecture around there. Most casinos in Biloxi have reopened, but moved on land now. They just broke ground for the ~$700M Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville casino/resort. The Hard Rock is open, which makes me happy. We had reservations for its opening night, which was the day before Katrina hit, so we never got to go, as they never actually opened! There seem to still be more slabs than rebuilds on the beautiful old 19th-century homes along the coast in Biloxi.
New Orleans' population is slowly trickling back in. It's not the ghost-town I remember even 6 months after the storm. Driving in from the east, most of the apartments and neighborhoods along I-10 are still gutted, but I'd say 25-30% have been rebuilt/renovated. A lot of the homes still have FEMA trailers in the driveway, but fortunately, this is sight is becoming more and more rare. The French Quarter is back into the swing of things. Some are leaving the water-lines and inspection marks on their houses and businesses as sort of a "F-you" to Katrina. A big problem now is that some of the rebuilt homes that have already passed inspections and are being lived-in are being scheduled for demolition.
I'll post more as it comes to mind.
Well, history shows that we have about 30 years between REALLY BIG storms in that area, and based on the economies there being what they are, they will rebuild as much as possible. Folks sometimes forget that New Orleans is not just a "party city", it is a MAJOR port as well, situated at the mouth of the Mississippi River, all of the grain shipments from the central US go through there, as well as a major portion of shipments from South America coming into the US.
They rebuilt after the strongest recorded storm in US history, Camille (I sat through that one...MAN, what an experience, a pine tree in our yard snapped off about 20 feet up and impaled itself in our roof! ), literally destroyed the Mississippi Gulf Coast, they'll do it again.
Yep, the spirit of the people will prevail, thats for sure!
The Mississippi coast didn't have NEARLY the economy it has now when Camille hit in '69(?), too. The casinos throughout the state, pre-Katrina, were putting something like $15-20M per DAY into the Mississippi economy. They've been working around the clock for two years straight trying to get things up and going down there. Some areas are still absolutely devastated, but they'll be back soon. Of course, "soon" is some time in the next 12-15 years. Mississippi alone has received over $100 Billion in aid money, but there's still a long way to go.
However, doesn't it disturb you to see the media focus almost exclusively on New Orleans and the almost total exclusion of the places that REALLY got damaged by the storm?
My other sister lives in Simms, so I do know what you have been through from her as well. Thankfully, she didn't have any major problems from the storm, but the whole Mobile area got pretty messy for a while as well.
I'm fixin' to head down there late September or early October to do some relief work. I'm not sure where I will be based out of this time around. The last couple times I was in Kenner.
A lot of the Katrina victims have since just put down roots around where I live. A lot of those people who came from LA to Houston got tired of waiting. I've got a family who used to live in New Orleans living right across the street from me now.
Out by the airport, hm? I lived off Read for a time in the very early 70's before we moved across the lake.
Good on ya for doing that man, awesome to see it.
Thanks again, for doing that, Mike! I know we talked before the first time you came down, and I bet you're getting a great perspective of how things are coming along down here.
To the OP, Masher:
Thanks for bringing this up. A lot has happened in the past two years, and I think many people away from the Coast are becoming complacent with the way things are, and not realizing how much still needs to be done. And as Gard said, it's not just New Orleans. Texas got slammed by Rita, Katrina absolutely ruined Mississippi and bits of Alabama. Ivan is still being felt three years later for a lot of coastal Alabama and the NW Florida panhandle. And then there's Florida's western Gulf Coast, all the way down towards the Keys. They had what, 5 storms within two months? I know there was one town that had 99% of its structures demolished. These guys still need to be in our thoughts, as well!
Yep. Once I stayed out by the Wal-Mart on Loyola. Another time I stayed on Clearview Pkwy down by Airline Drive. The last time, we stayed down by Laplace.
I would totally move there is my wife was willing. For a city boy like me, I got the thrill of a lifetime chasing down gators in the spillway off the highway to Baton Rouge.
You're tougher than I, I grew up there and am never moving back. I got totally sick of the weather, too damn hot and humid for me...
...however, I do miss the people and the FOOD! Not to mention being able to go to the 'Dome for home games!
Gators there are like pigeons in most cities, they live in the drainage canals throughout the city as well! Have they had you chasing the nutria yet?
I know that section of I-10 you're talkin' about all too well, back when I lived in BRLA, I played 5 nights a week in the French Quarter, so I crossed those bridges 10 times a week! Don't miss that drive home at 3 am, no sir, not a bit!
Oh yeah. We went out in one of those boats with the big fan on the back to find them. The guys who took us said most people shoot them. I can see why. Those things were all over the place.
During the storm, we voluteered as EMT, Triage-trained, with heavy experience in resource management in emergency situations. We were turned down. FEMA is a joke. Stoked to see life coming back to this part of the world. The real tragedy in my opinion is not the storm or the devastation, but the management or lack thereof of the aid/rebuild of the area. My heart goes out to everyone from that area. Not just New Orleans, but Mississippi too.
Yeah, damn huge rats that live in water. They taste pretty good, the fur is actually fairly useful if you're into that kind of thing - which is how they came to be in south Louisiana, they're a non-native species, introduced from South America about a hundred years ago for the hope of giving SoLA a fur trapping industry.
That worked well.
"...you're doin' a great job, Brownie..."
Dude, you have no idea, I could tell you horror stories. My bro-in-law worked for a FEMA contractor for most of the past 2 years, and he finally had to just quit because it was so unbelieveably, pathetically, stupidly bad.
S'ok, there are plenty of folks in that area that have no trouble lifting themselves up by their own bootstraps, the media just doesn't give them much attention, too busy focusing on the whiners.