Craig and the Very Wet, Very Windy Day
Finally done for the day. The power is still out at the house, but it’s a pleasant evening with some rain and a decent breeze so we’ll be comfortable. And because the restaurant will be closed tomorrow (we’re slap out of food and the place a mess after being used as a dormitory for 24 or so hours), I’m in no hurry to head out. Nothing’s open anyway. I mean NOTHING. This is why we’re out of food.
Sorry about the gap in writing, but we lost power at the shop at 6am. It was raining sideways and winds continued to increase. We were able to catch a little TV by hooking it up to the generator, but Internet service was inoperable and, frankly, we were too busy entertaining ourselves by fending off derelicts (“gotny beer?” “No. We’re sold out (true).”) Since the restaurant faces north, the building blocked the wind and the balcony kept out most of the rain. This left us fairly dry on the sidewalk to hang out, smoke, swap stories and watch the wind rip signs and various pieces of roofing from nearby buildings. Stu was able to corral a wayward Latter & Blum sign and use it as a skateboard sail to cruise around the block in the rain.
I figured we’d just take what food we could and sell it on the sidewalk once things started to calm down. But the idea proved short-lived when we sold it all in about 30 minutes (thank you hungry, storm-tossed neighborhood folks!).
….so New Orleans and its close ‘burbs were a bit oversold on this storm. Not that it was difficult to do, of course. The warnings were honest and, given the timing of them, based on very, very real concerns. And nearly everything worked this time around — from local government facilitating evacuation to the state sending in the Guard to the national folks having what was needed on the ground. Lessons learned and thank you.
While the national media oversensationalized the levee topping and too many televised reporters tried to make a run-of-the-mill event into Katrina II, I can tell you the best story most of the nation will never see. It’s what is happening this evening to the folks in Lafitte and other small communities directly south of New Orleans and to the southwest. Some are heavily flooded for the second time in three years — with many just-rebuilt lives, homes and businesses again in tatters. The problem is they are too few in number for most folks to care. And they’re still assessing damage in Lafourche and Terrebonne Parishes. God bless those folks tonight, as well as others still facing what’s left of this weather system. Those of us who stayed in New Orleans know how creeply lucky we are this time around.
…so our city this evening has lots downed branches and trees, plenty of missing signs and a lot of places remain without power. It’ll likely be the end of the week before things get completely back to normal (open banks, working gas pumps, neighbors returning, RESUPPLYING RESTAURANTS). But at least this one is over (here).
…and I can keep that appointment Wednesday.