Right now, here in the New Orleans area, it is time to look back and reflect, as it is the one year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. The paper today was full of articles about how different parts of town are recovering (or not) from the storm, and about people's plans for the future as well as the losses they are mourning. I started to reflect on how life has changed for me and mine.
We are fortunate. We are living in our house with our stuff, all of which was untouched by Katrina. Our kids are in the same schools they would have been in if Katrina. My husband and I are working the same places we were before the storm. In other ways, life has changed. There was a huge line at the courthouse today of people filing Katrina claims. My husband was hired to be a salesman, but since it is hard to find help and since they can't sell what they can't deliver, he spends part of the week driving a delivery truck. Two of my daughter's good friends did not return after the storm. I am working on several Katrina cases, and I'm sure a lot more are on the way. Macys hasn't reopened in our mall. The doctor's office is packed. There are "for sale" signs on houses on almost every street in my subdivision--and they aren't going down quickly. I wonder if Katrina is the reason my son's school won't have a bus this year. The bus driver said only two kids signed up, and of course he can't afford to run a bus for so few. Whenever a hurricane forms we are all glued to our TVs or computers, checking the path several times a day and discussing evacuation plans. I think our sense of safety has been shattered, we aren't sure things will be ok. I know we will all be glad when hurricane season is over.