I’ve been trying to put into diary the gauntlet of emotions I’ve experienced these past months in dealing with the aftermath of Katrina. Over the past few days, reading about people being evicted from FEMA hotel housing, and reading DKossian comments along the themes of “Katrina Welfare Queens,” I decided I needed to write this all out.
Charest Family on the Web Posts
My wife and I have been busy these past few weeks trying to close in our house with insulation, drywall, and new windows before cold weather sets in. I realize for most people reading this, 60 degree weather doesn’t seem very cold, but down here on the coast it does mean winter. Warm weather is the trade-off we have for putting up with hurricanes – which until two months ago seemed like a decent trade.
One on-going commentary I read is that the Democratic Party never misses an opportunity to miss an opportunity. Well, with the on-going cleanup and relief efforts for Hurricane Katrina, I see the Democratic party missing an opportunity.
I’m picking up some rather interesting feelers concerning the pending economic impact from hurricane Katrina. None of my feelers is good news for the Gulf Coast, and I do believe there will be a negative national impact, despite what bu$hco is claiming.
It’s been 26 days since Katrina blew through the Gulf Coast and the patterns of life here have changed. Physically; the difference can be seen in the ever-present mountains of debris, shattered buildings, Military vehicles and service people everywhere one looks. But there is also a different feel in the air from the way people move and talk; the things that we consider important now and the things that demand our time.
Editor’s Note: This is a commentary on my impressions of initial relief efforts and response by FEMA, the Red Cross, and National Guard. I wrote it about Saturday, September 17, 2005, but did not publish it at the time. It appears here on-line for the first time.
Some commentary on the response time by emergency crews after the storm passed.
I have online access again today, so I can catch up on real news and do some posts! Many people have asked how to help (in comments to my previous posts) I have spent some of my time these past few days researching relief efforts here.
I want to address the issue of why people (why I) did not evacuate prior to the storm.
My reason for not evacuating prior to Katrina making landfall is simple: I did not believe the officials who were telling us to evacuate.
The week went by in a blur. It seemed that every day we worked all day without stopping, and still it seemed like we had not accomplished anything. We had no electricity and tap water was unsafe for drinking although we did have enough pressure to get wash and flushing water. We didn’t bother to lock our house when we left for the evenings – most anything we could salvage was already outside drying out, so locking the door was pointless. I didn’t even carry my wallet this first week. All I was wearing each day was a pair of shorts or swim trunks, T-shirt, and sneakers without socks. The week was hot, with temperatures in the high 90’s, and I remember coming close to getting dehydrated several times.