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Gustav and going home


I watched Gustav’s approach safely at work a hundred miles or so away from home. It was frustrating to see all the news focused on New Orleans as though no other place would have concerns or problems. I tried to distract myself by the reruns of old TV shows in between patients–but I wasn’t very successful. Even the best of Andy of Mayberry or I Love Lucy was not enough to keep my attention.

The worst part was figuring out what I was going to do after I was relieved on Monday morning. Austin was a designated evacuation site; Houston would be in the direction of the storm; and the hotels were full. My relief was late–and after a leisurely breakfast and even more coffee, I heard that landfall had been made and we were predicted to have high wind, lots of rain, and probably flooding. Well, I’ve lived through that–house is sturdy, never been flooded even when ground is saturated and the exit streets are four to six feet deep–and so I drove home.

It feels odd to ‘sneak’ into your home–mandatory evacuation was still in effect but all the roads were open. I could get no local information even from the website the county had put up until I was actually home and could listen to the local radio–everything was focused on New Orleans. In my opinion, if God had intended for us to live below sea level, he would have provided us with a different breathing mechanism!

The city is boarded up and there is almost no-one on the streets. Once again the news media is making heroes out of the ones that ‘ride out’ the storm and do not evacuate although they have no urgent reason to stay–other than not wanting to face the traffic. The news media interviewed a few people in the shelters but I doubt that any of them spent as many hours on a bus or car traveling as did those evacuees.

We also have no mail–and that sounds like a small thing as yesterday was Labor Day and there wasn’t supposed to be delivery–but what it means is that anything put in the mail to us over the past two or three days goes to someplace in Tennessee to wait for processing. The mail will eventually get here–but it will take weeks before it is all sorted out.

However, I have electricity, freezer is packed full, refrigerator has some stuff in it, my three sons are all safe, my husband is with his mother and sister—and I don’t have to be anywhere until Monday. The doors and windows are rattling with the wind and it looks exceptionally dreary outside–but life is good today.

One Comment Post a comment
  1. Sylvia, just had to say I do agree with you on the New Orleans hype, I live only 60 miles north and am tired of hearing about the people who have been helped to evacuate, they are not the only folks who are in that situation. Hundreds of others have traveled out of the area, on their own steam. What about the little towns,communities, etc. The news media has created a monster. I will be in N. Louisiana for another week. I depend on family and they are not able on the spar of the moment to run to my aid. Especially when you are taken care of. But I do miss my sewing machine, and fabrics. LOL Rene

    September 6, 2008

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