August 29, 2007

Today is the 2nd Anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. Several people have asked how New Orleans is different today than it was when we moved here four weeks after the storm. Or even how it is different from before the storm. In a lot of ways, it is different but in some it's still the same.

Before the storm, people walked the French Quarter, especially on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights til all hours. They do that now.

You can still walk down the street with an open beer/drink in your hand (in the FQ).

The calliope music from the Steamship Natchez can still be heard.

The streetcars are still running. Different schedule now, not as often, but still running.

People still sit on the stoop and say hi to passersby.

Traffic is still bad, especially when most people don't know where in the blue blazes they want to go.

The sweet smell of fresh pralines still wafts out the doors of Southern Candy.

Street performers still entertain in front of Cafe Du Monde.

Cafe Du Monde is no longer open 24 hours a day.

Four weeks after the storm, armed national guards and state troopers could be found on every street corner and walking down the streets from 4 pm til 8 am.

Now you find armed thugs and murderers at all the street corners and walking the streets along with the streetwalkers.

Common courtesy and politeness is rare where it used to flourish.

Mine Mine Mine is heard more often than there's plenty for everyone.

English, Cajun, and French are minority languages compared to Spanish and oriental.

Schools are begging for the teachers that they fired immediately after the storm to come back and teach.

It's really kinda funny. Except when we go out of town or to the dr. or to the major grocery store, my world consists of the French Quarter. If you look just at "my world", it is the same friendly, neighborly, helpful place as ever. The people say hi and wave (locals). Parking sucks, but thats beside the point. It's once you step outside the Quarter that rudeness sets in.


Gerry said...

Mary, did NOLA's survive? I swear that was the BEST meal I have ever had.

We only made it to to New Orleans once but I loved it. We went to Ann Rice's house (just before she moved), to the cemetaries, on the Vampire tour, took the St. Charles to the end and back. Loved it, loved it, loved it!

Maddie Can Fly said...

So sad isn't it? The thing I would miss the most is hearing the different languages - the French, Cajun, even Dutch! And I remember the places on on Bourbon Street NEVER CLOSED!