Goodnight and good luck
The old Edward R. Murrow signoff has special meaning these days down here.
Last time, when we all said goodbye before Katrina, we all assumed it would be for a few days.
This time, we know better. The simple “g’bye!” is always followed by “good luck” and something like, “we’ll see you when we see you.” And there’s a lot of exchanging cell phone numbers. We’re hopeful and optimistic, but a lot more realistic as well. Plenty of folks are already headed out, getting an early start on their holiday weekend and leaving their return very, very open-ended. Hotel rooms are pretty much nailed down for anyplace within about six hours, meaning those leaving late and hoping for hotels will have to take the kids farther into Florida, maybe up to check out the tourist sites (both of them) in Dallas or, in the case of one of my employees, to Nashville to check it out. He’s never been, and figures now is good a time as any. He’s a Tulane student, and says the plan is for classes to resume next Thursday. We’ll see.
A customer pointed out last night that contraflow would likely begin sometime on Saturday EXCEPT for the fact that LSU plays in Baton Rouge Saturday night. It would be poor politics to tell the thousands of fans from New Orleans that, “Hey! You can go to the game but you can’t go back home!” So, assuming the system stays on the same general path, I’d imagine this would all start sometime (very) early Sunday. Or something.
I just got a phone call from some outfit in Texas, asking if a salesman could some by to see me Wednesday morning at nine. I told them sure, go ahead.
The National Guard has set up shop a couple blocks away at the Convention Center. Helicopters are landing and taking off and Humvees are moving around and there’s all these folks in uniform. It brings back a lot of memories and, well, the Groundhog Day Effect of everything happening again.
…and there’s that “goodbye” thing hanging over everything.
It sucks. But now I gotta stay. I have an appointment with a salesman.