Tuesday, January 24, 2006

You'll know when you know

There is too much story to tell to make sense of it just now, but we are home. Some days, it is so much like it was when I left for vacation in early August...and some days, it is just as though the city is frozen in time after the flood waters receded, Katrina Patina covering all and everything...and a season's worth of decay and oxidation working its dark magic into the soul of the city.

Home. I knew I would have to return, but did not dare that I could be back this soon. No work just yet, not the kind your parents expect you to get and do...but the work is there, getting out to clean the neighborhood and wrench open the drains and catch basins and yank a lifetime supply of bottle and cans and gloves and works and obscure things (a Barbie doll leg, I ask you?) and to be seen in the neighborhood as just out doing something and being "there". Some days, it is all about being there.

Come to New Orleans, when you are ready. We want you to see how it really is...the media has done us a history of disservice from which we struggle to recover, an especially arduous uphill battle thanks to our self-destructing mayor and his chocolate city political suicide. Yeesh. But still and all, we want to come...maybe not just yet, but think about Jazz Fest or some quiet weekend. Prepare yourself for the worst and then enjoy the best we have to offer in spite of what you see and feel. We are home and some day, we want you to once again feel at home here too. After all, we have such a debt of gratitude to pay to the everyday people of this country who opened their hearts and lives to us when we could not be at home when we truly wanted to. Let us return the favor some day. For now, thank you.

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