Had Bad on Bourbon Street

I kinda fell down on that whole NaBloPoMo thing, didn't I? But I was at a conference! In New Orleans! I had a colonoscopy! And then we got a new kitty! No, not at the same time, although that might have been interesting. I'll tell you more about the latter two events in another post. LavaCon is a technical communication conference targeted to content strategists, tech comm managers, UX designers, and those sorts of folks.... Read more →

Luckily, It Wasn't Completely Depressing

Bourbon Street Originally uploaded by Bozoette. You may think, given my last few entries, that my trip to New Orlean was a complete downer. Such is not the case. The French Quarter is still an amazing party scene, with folks lurching along Bourbon Street with beers in hand and beads on necks. In fact, you can even see beads in the trees on a sunny Sunday morning. The jazz bars, the titty bars, the gay... Read more →

Lathe and Plaster and Rusted Nails

Welcome to 2428 St. Roch Avenue, New Orleans. Ms. Veronica Carey owns this camelback home, where she's lived since 1988. Before the storm, she shared her home with three grandchildren and a disabled cousin. She's 76. When Katrina hit, Ms. Carey evacuated with her family; she hasn't been back. With no insurance and no FEMA money, how can she? Well, Rebuilding Together is helping put her house back together. When the project manager called Ms.... Read more →

Love Is A House Transformed

Meet Mr. Louis Freeman. He is 87 years old. Today my group worked on his house, at 2225 Orleans Street, in the historic Treme section of New Orleans. His son, Louis Jr. ran the Oasis Unisex barber shop one-half of the house. When Katrina hit, Louis Sr. was trapped in his attic for days. He was finally rescued from the attic, only to be trapped again on a freeway overpass without food, water, or medical... Read more →

A School Becomes Housing

The Marian Center is in the Gentilly neighborhood, one of the worst hit areas of New Orleans. This Catholic middle school took over 10 feet of water; the whole first floor was completely submerged. A lot of work has already been done to bring the building back, but the children and staff aren't there. So what do you do with a school building? You turn it into housing for volunteers. Catholic Charities is coordinating a... Read more →

For Six Months, New Orleans Was A City Without Children

200,000 homes destroyed; 80,000 businesses lost. At first, it's not so bad. FEMA trailers sit outside homes in Lakeview and Gentile, where folks are living while they rebuild. But too soon you see that this is the exception, not the rule. More common are the homes that look just as they did after the storm. You can still see the holes in the roofs where people busted through the attic to get out. Waterlines are... Read more →

My Bags Are Packed

I got everything on the List Of Things To Bring, including work gloves, rubber gloves, bug repellent, sunscreen, and hand sanitizer. I've packed sturdy shoes, jeans, shorts (it's gonna be in the 80s!), and a whole slew of tee-shirts. Oh, and a nice pair of khaki capri pants and a nice top, because I'm working a Volunteers of America golf tournament fundraiser on Monday. I hope I get the beer concession! After that? I'll be... Read more →