Ten years ago, on August 29th a powerful storm saved New Orleans.
I know that sounds
twisted curious, but ‘save’ the City, it did.
Backstory: We were still living in Ohio.
Reinventing ourselves Relocating to New Orleans had not yet come into our future plans.
The entire world knows what happened next: the storm was fierce (with 120mph winds, a 14ft storm surge, 15 additional inches of rain, and breeched levees).
Here’s the thing; NOLA is surrounded by water- Swampland to the south/west/east and big ‘ole Lake Pontchartrain to the north. We also have a little gal named the Mississippi River that snakes it’s way around the city- though, oddly enough, Big Muddy was not a contributing factor to the flooding.
The Storm pushed A LOT of water up onto/into the already spongy land and found it’s way to Lake Pontchartrain via the Industrial Canal.
Problem was… that this man-made canal (and others) weren’t strong enough to take the pressure, anddddddd a few people ditched their posts controlling the locks.
When the lake water receded it sought it’s lowest spot, which happened to be the City.
Okay. That’s the meteorology, Physics 101, sprinkled with a dash of human self-preservation, a pinch of poor city planning, and a full cuppa’ crap from the Army Corp Of Engineers.
People died. A lot of them. From Texas to Florida (we tend to forget that), but the nation focused on New Orleans and woke-up to the fact that New Orleans was important to them. To the Country.
Before Katrina, New Orleans was grinding along- trying to address it’s political corruption culture, repair old buildings, fill the pot holes, get a few Festivals to
City planning was slow, but bringing a city with a large inventory of sub-par/non-compliance (and overtly neglected) structures populated by a historically ingrained citizenry with a drop-out rate of 80%, didn’t make any true action to bring the City into the 21st Century (let alone the 20th) any more easy.
And then it all got blown away.
And the Nation came to the rescue (which is code for: a shitload of moola flooded in– pun intended).
The People. The Money. The Thought. The Brains. The Determination. The Reinvention… of the City has been nothing if not amazing.
Hand to God.
Except for the streets… they still suck.
But WE relocated, so there’s THAT silver lining.