NaBloPoMo: Hurricane Sandy

On a whim and at the last minute I’ve decided to attempt NaBloPoMo. Why? I have no idea, really. I say, why not? All I can do is try but, trust me, if I don’t accomplish this goal I won’t beat myself up over it. A goal does not have to be achieved to be of value; the attempt and the process is what’s key.

I began blogging seven years ago this month. My first blog was named “Traveling Mermaid” and I began it as a direct result of living in post-Katrina New Orleans. I had never heard of a blog before the storm but I learned quickly about blogs in the days following the hurricane after I evacuated to Jackson, MS and became frustrated trying to get accurate information about what was happening in my city. I discovered a couple of blogs via forums on where I found real information about what was really going on in my neighborhood despite the sensational garbage the networks were showing on TV. Remember, this was 2005 – way before social media and instantaneous information. I was honored when my musings and rantings about post-Katrina life from 2005-2009 was chosen by Dr. Daisy Pignetti to be featured  in her paper “Blogging the Unfinished Story in post-Katrina New Orleans” and presented at the Oxford Internet Institute Symposium at Oxford University in England last September.

Long story short: once I returned to the city where life was now an altered reality I joined the few voices that were raised online trying to educate the rest of America about the realities of life where government was broken.

Today on the news I watched the people of Staten Island, NY cry out their outrage and disbelief at the lack of response to their area. Tears blurred my eyes because they brought back the feeling of helplessness we experienced here for our entire city in the weeks after Hurricane Katrina. Many believed the federal response to our city was so slow because so many of our people are low to middle income. The difference is that today New Jersey and New York have a president who cares and is completely engaged in recovery efforts. In 2005, President Bush ate cake while over 1500 people drowned.

It’s going to be a long. slow haul for the people of New York, New Jersey and the other states affected by Hurricane Sandy. I know just how long and how difficult this road is going to be for them and my heart goes out to them tonight. Stand strong, Americans, it will get better. Just be prepared for a hard road. Be prepared for heaps of garbage on the streets for weeks without pick-up, be prepared for debris everywhere and flat tires. Be prepared for long ass gas lines and limited hours when you can buy food and prescription medication. Be prepared for  limited medical facilities. (Be very careful clearing up debris and try not to get hurt.) Be prepared for depression and a lack of mental health facilities or options. Be prepared for the scammers who will try to cheat you on home repair work. The list goes on and on…… and will morph as the months pass. That’s what people who have never experienced life after a catastrophe don’t know: it’s not just about the few hours of terror in the eye of the storm, it’s about the everyday slog of life for months, even years, after.

NaBloPoMo November 2012

7 thoughts on “NaBloPoMo: Hurricane Sandy

  1. I am not sure what NaBloPoMo is – posting everyday? Good luck!

    I honestly think you had a harder time in New Orleans than we will have, as it seems the structural damage was over a larger percentage of the City,and your climate is more conducive of all the mold etc that you wrote of. I say that though with no access to TV and I’ve not been below mid-town so far – haven’t been back to my apartment -so I don’t really know. Only that uptown and midtown are amazingly normal. But I know Staten Island and NJ especially are a whole different story. k.


      1. hmmm, Howl and Whole World Howls Back in a giant collective creative voice. Now that would take the crayon outside the lines.


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