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The Katrina Papers

These were published on the Angel Paths forums in September 2005, following Hurricane Katrina's destruction of large parts of New Orleans.

[Please note - photos used are placed by Liam from a large collection, please let him know if you know who took them and the credits to be used.]

Author - D-man. Who was there. Visit D-man's Blog.

Part One:

Jan gave me permission in a reply on my other posts about caskets and spirits telling me to feel free to post my blog.. so I will do just that..

It will be over the course of a few posts.. so people have a chance to read them, and I have a chance to write them.

The stories that are going to be posted over the next several days are not going to be for the faint-hearted. If you cry easily - be prepared. If you don't cry at all - be prepared.

Some stories may overlap time frames. It's so very difficult to keep track of the days under the circumstances that I have just endured. But I count myself f***ing lucky to come out in the end and have that be one of my problems. Yes, I lost every material possession except my laptop, but I'm HERE, out of New Orleans, where there are still countless others unaccounted for.

Here I give you now: Sunday & Monday

“If you are sitting there watching this report, and within the sound of my voice, honestly and bluntly, there’s nothing that I can say other than ‘Get out of town and if you are deciding to stay, you are rather frankly stupid’”.

These are the cautionary words of a weather reporter Sunday night, August 28, 2005. This is the night that Hurricane Katrina loomed off the Gulf Coast. Wagging her fingers and batting her eyelashes at New Orleans. “I’m coming. Are you ready for me?” she taunts and teases. Daring the strong-willed denizens to batten down the hatches and ride out the storm. Thousands did. Thousands regret that decision. Thousands had no choice. Thousands are gone. Thousands – a number that only brings tears to your eyes when you think of it. It is a number that fills up other cities and refugee camps with the survivors. It is a number that destroys phone lines making the sound of her voice one of the most hated things in the minds of those thousands. “ALL CIRCUITS ARE BUSY NOW.”

The night goes by rather smoothly actually. The winds pick up and the rain starts to fall. It’s soothing to listen to the rustling of maple, pine, and oak. Each of nature’s children battling with each other and the winds to see who is the strongest. It’s the perfect time to leave a blog on Catch27. “Katrina to kick shit out of New Orleans” I know the power is going to be out for a few days. Winds like this are not going to be merciful by the time they are done. I might as well let the people that I have so much fun talking with and reading about know that I will be unavailable for a while. You never really know how often they read your blogs. (BUZZ is really no good indication after-all)

Sunday night comes to a close along with my eyelids. We’ll have to see what Monday holds in store as Katrina makes her actual landfall.

Monday is here, the power is out, and the winds are out of this world. Sustained at over 140 mph with gusts over 160 mph. In the end – the trees won the battle by a majority; taking losses, and those losses wiping out what they could on their way out. The water is having fun racing down the empty streets, briefly impeded only by random debris and branches of victorious trees. It rises slowly. To the middle of the road. To the curb tops. Up onto the sidewalk. Here is where it stops. I’ve seen afternoon showers do the same. This is a low lying area next to the river after all.

With no power, the only thing left to do that will waste away the time; READ. And that’s what I did. Until the sun went down and the battery ran out on my first flashlight I just read. An ironical choice of books at that. Rings of Ice by Piers Anthony. It’s about how the government redirected an ice nebula towards the Earth to use the suns refracted rays as a source of power, and the rings melted, raising the levels of the seas by 2000 feet, drowning the Earth. The trials and tribulations brought forth in that book helped with several of my decision making process in the days to follow. It’s a good thing I had absolutely nothing else to do and finished the book in one sitting.

It’s time to go to sleep now this Monday night. Completely unaware of what Tuesday holds in store for me and countless thousands of others.


d-man

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