If by now you have not heard about the destruction that Hurrican Katrina has caused then you must be dead and not reading this blog. As a native of Mobile, Alabama, I have been through my share of hurricanes. But never, never in my life I have witnessed anything like this. The sheer destruction that the storm caused is unbelievable. I am still thinking, "this actually happened in the United States." I was watching the news earlier and started crying when I realized that the people of the areas affected have no idea what to do next. The have no homes, no clothes, no food, no anything. I am certain that I would lose my mind if I was ever involved in an event like this.
On Sunday morning when I left Mobile on my way back to Atlanta, the storm had winds of 135 mph. By Monday when the storm came ashore, it had winds of 175mph. That's a big gain in strength. The people were ordered to evacuate, but many had no means to do so. They had no transportation out of the city. And if they did, traffic was so bad that evacuation was slow at best. There are reports that the usual 4 hour drive from New Orleans to Houston was took 20 hours. People tried to go east, but were redirected north and west, because the path of the storm was unpredicatable.
What's sad about this is that it has happened before and was predicted to happen again. The New Orleans newspaper, the Time-Picayune, did a five article series on what would happen if a category 5 hurricane struck New Orleans. As I read the different articles, I was amazed as to how accurate the depicitions of the potential destruction were. It seems that everything that the writers predicted has occured just as they said that it would. The fact that there was a similar occurence in the city in 1965 should have been warning that it would/could happen again. It makes me wonder why there was lolly-gagging and pussy-footing going on, when it was warned that a storm like this would take out the city.
At this time, my heart and prayers go out to all of the people affected by Hurrican Katrina. Some of my money will also go to The American RedCross. And I hope that you all will follow suit.
BTW-My family in Mobile survived the storm. The have no power, part of my brother's roof blew off, and his car was heavily damaged, but they are all alive.