My wife is from New Orleans. Our daughter is from New Orleans.
Her parents, brothers and all of her relatives are from there.
Her parents evacuated on Saturday morning and are staying with us. One of her brothers is staying near us with his family and her other brother headed off to Atlanta.
We’ve been watching since Friday, coverage of the latest hurricane on the local television stations where we live and also on the WWL TV station (a New Orleans TV station) website.
As she’s told me many times, evacuating from hurricanes is a fact of life for anyone who lives in N.O. and it was no different for her and her family throughout their lives. Of course, they never experienced anything like Katrina until that tragedy happened. Even though she no longer lives there the memories of Katrina are still fresh on her mind and its been a very difficult time these last few days as we anxiously await. Sadness and a gloomy sense of impending doom has gripped us as we prepare for what this latest hurricane will unleash upon Louisiana.
To make matters even worse my wife’s parents house is on the West Bank and its being predicted that that part of the city will suffer very heavy damage, more than in Orleans Parish. There are no levees in place to protect the West Bank.
I can’t imagine devastation on the level of Katrina. At least, I’m not allowing myself to think in those terms. It seems to me that kind of cruelty is just simply not possible again or at least not so soon after what happened 3 years ago.
My wife’s parents lost so much in Katrina and only in the last year and a half have they finally finished rebuilding their house and their own lives.
It’s unbearable to contemplate that they might experience such devastation and heartbreak once again.
Its only hours now before Gustav descends upon Louisiana.
I’m thinking of everyone that I know that is from New Orleans. I’m thinking of New Orleans. A city that I love. A culture and people that I love.
It can not be washed away. It can not happen. It will not happen.