What the Nola Bloggers are Saying: Refugee Edition

(10 am. – promoted by ek hornbeck)

While we’re waiting, these folks are waiting too, but many of them far from home.

So here’s the refugee edition.

Humid Haney Rant has a wild series of iPhotos taken while on the road, going towards Alabama.

Loki had a rough time evacuating but finally posts over at Humid City:

We are in MccComb, MS with friends (The Admiral is an excellent host!). More audio from the road tomorrow when we head up to Ohio.

Cats are much better.

Stay tuned.

Loki, Refugee Founder of HumidCity

Gustav from Ray in New Orleans:

A few NOLA bloggers are in Pensacola (myself, Sarah Elise, and Varg) so we’re thinking of getting together for drinks tonight. If you’re here, let me know.

My hosts in Pensacola (Rice U. buddy and Pensacola blogger Pat) recommended the Seville Quarter. If anybody has any other suggestions, let me know. Not sure of a time yet, but my family is 900 miles away and I don’t know about you, but I need my New Orleans friends around me real bad right now.

Got my first bit of ‘fugee charity. I went to the T-Mobile store because I can’t find my phone charger, and the lady just gave me one. She’s the spitting image of the cute barista at the Tchoup PJ’s who gave me free carrot cake for breakfast yesterday (they had to get rid of it or let it rot), which is a weird coincidence.

I can’t quite wean myself from the TV but for some reason the incessant internet news/gossip addiction of Katrina hasn’t grabbed me yet. I think I’m just still tired and numb from the last three days of preparing for staying and preparing for leaving.

Bec, please call me if you can. I’m worried about you, but hope the steaks turn out good.

Maitri from Maitri’s VatulBlog is posting on twitter (something, by the way, I just begun to discover during the Democratic Convention):

In Meridian, MS. Heading to Tuscaloosa, AL.


about 1 hour ago from txt

Construction on 59N for 4 mi starting exit 73. Take back roads – Hwy 11. about 4 hours ago from txt


59N north of H’burg wide open. about 4 hours ago from txt


Hattiesburg, MS. Where’s Brett Favre’s house? about 4 hours ago from txt


Just ate lunch in greater metro Columbia, MS. about 5 hours ago from txt


In Abita Springs, LA. about 7 hours ago from txt


Fast-moving outer bands are here. Hello, Gustav. about 9 hours ago from twhirl


@crosswordgrl No, not necessarily good. Wave height estimates have gone up and storm could intensify back to 4 or 5. about 9 hours ago from twhirl in reply to crosswordgrl

Not a refugee, Slidell resident JudyB reports from home:

Four thirty on Sunday night. Apparently the first bands of the storm are passing over us, but I can’t tell. With boards on all of the windows, it’s like being in a cave.

We went out searching for ice earlier this morning. We rode from one end of Gause Blvd. to the other. After ten or so stops, we came up with nothing. On our way back, we were stopped at a redlight by a Rite Aid that was just closing and there was a pile of BAGS OF ICE, free for the taking!!! It was wild. We pulled in and got six bags as two other people took the rest. What a great suprise. So I think we’ll be okay when the electricity goes out.

I have still been hearing blue jays and cicadas throughout the day. I think (hope) that’s a positive sight.

Gustav is still a strong storm, but the winds are slowing down. Now if we can just make it jog to the west a wee bit more.

Doing my final cooking chore (chicken wings). Loaded with candles, bread,sandwich meat, pnut butter, snacks, gin & tonic beer and water. I think we’ll be okay. Oh yeah! and a few 7 year old xanax pills to get us thru that horrible sound of the wind. I hate that part.

The cats are still pretty laid back and I’m hoping that continues.

See y’all on the other side.

Clay from NOLA-dishu tells of his evacuation (there’s some good pics in his post):

After initially wanting to ride out the storm, we decided to hit the road. We took late Saturday and dropped my car off on the northshore before heading up I-12 to I-55 to North Mississippi.

We averaged 35 mph on I-55 until we got to Mississippi and then it picked up slowly.

Once we got north of Jackson, we were finally able to hit the speed limit. We to our destination in North Mississippi a little after midnight.

We decided to get all the way out of the storm. Candice and I are safe in North Mississippi. We’re hanging out way in the country. Blogging might be a little slow, but I’ll be busy typing things up and I’ll dump them when I get to a connection. I can use Twitter with my phone, so you can follow me on that.

Clay also posts a picture of his dog, Susie.  Many of the bloggers I’ve linked traveled with one or more animals.

I’ve been surfing the NOLA blogs a lot today.  There’s many more stories, and I read Loki’s twitter account of his frustrating refugee road trip with family and animals but now can’t find the link.

These are brave, aware folks and they are, in my opinion, one of the best things ever to happen to New Orleans.  They hold their local politicians accountable for their mistakes regardless of political party, and they also cover national news.  Good citizen journalists, all.

I hope all are safe and well.


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  1. … I got Gustav on the brain.

    Sue me.

    • Edger on September 1, 2008 at 05:49

    This article from them today should be titled…

    “This is bushlicking propaganda”

    Bush: No to convention, plans Gustav trip to Texas

    By BEN FELLER – 3 hours ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) – Bracing for a storm that could surpass Hurricane Katrina, President Bush on Sunday said he would skip the Republican National Convention and head instead to Texas to be with evacuees and emergency responders. He warned a jittery Gulf Coast that it could face “significant flooding.”

    “The message to the people of the Gulf Coast is, this storm is dangerous,” Bush said bluntly after a briefing on Hurricane Gustav’s path and power. “There’s a real possibility of flooding, storm surge, and high winds. … Do not put yourself in harm’s way, or make rescue workers take unnecessary risks.”

    The president’s quick change of travel will put him in the region on the very day that Gustav was expected to slam into the United States. The swift, hands-on level of engagement comes three years after his White House was blistered for a sluggish response to Hurricane Katrina. The legacy of that debacle helped shape Bush’s presidency.

    Bush’s move also shows the vastly changing tone of the Republican convention in St. Paul, Minn., where presidential candidate John McCain has said Gustav will now take precedence.

    The National Hurricane Center said Gustav weakened slightly but was expected to regain strength as it moves over warm waters toward the U.S. coast, possibly becoming a Category 4 hurricane later Sunday. Forecasters upgraded a hurricane watch to a warning for a swath of over 500 miles, from Louisiana near the Texas border to the Alabama-Florida state line.

    Bush has had a visible role in responding to disasters in person, especially after Katrina, but heading to the site even before the storm hits is highly unusual. The president sought to assure the nation that the federal government was ready this time and working well with state and local leaders.

    “There’s a lot of preparations that have gone in, in anticipation of this storm,” Bush said.

    No shit it’s dangerous George. To whom? Your reputation? McCain and his presidential prospects? The future of the GOP?

    Oh, and maybe the people in New Orleans? Remember them, George? Things like this work out very well for them, I’m told. By your mother, George.

    Yes Bush has had a “a visible role in responding to disasters in person”. And everyone noticed, too…

    I’m sure there have been furious GOP preparations and strategy sessions “in anticipation of this storm”. Mostly under the heading “WTF do we do now?” in McCains campaign?

    • Alma on September 1, 2008 at 06:46

    The things I packed yesterday, on the 3-year memorial of the day Katrina came to New Orleans, were much the same as they were three years ago.  I took the same things from my house, with a little variation.  One less cat.  One additional child.  Same paintings, same figurines, same family photos wedding album.  We took care to back-up our photos, movies, and important papers.  I carefully covered all the paintings we couldn’t take in plastic bags and stored them in closets, took down pictures off the walls, placed vases and boxes inside drawers.  Paul secured the outside.  He had to use leftover pieces of wood from our renovations to cover our front door because the piece he’d used during Katrina is now the base of the Mardi Gras float we made for the Krewe of Abeona parade earlier this year.   That is the spirit of New Orleans: live life to the fullest and enjoy each moment, because you don’t know if you’ll be around for the next party.

    For all the loss of innocence, disappointment, frustration, sorrow, and tragedy we felt from Katrina, we gained something, too.  Katrina kept us in New Orleans.  It taught us what it means to love a place, a space, and a community.  It taught us that a group of people with purpose can change each other’s lives and create a better place right in our own backyards.  It taught me, as a health professional who is trained to work in other communities, what it is like to be that ‘other community’.  The destruction of our city highlighted new needs and compelled us to stay and live our lives in this wounded, wonderful place.

    What we learn from this coming storm?  Will it miss New Orleans completely, creating an enormous ‘cry wolf’ mentality at future threats?  Will it approach the city and challenge a whole different set of weaknesses not identified during Katrina?  Is history doomed to repeat, or just re-teach the lesson that no amount of planning can fix the vulnerabilities of poverty?

    Full post here:

    Cold Spaghetti

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