NOLA 3 Thursday and Friday

I started this on Thursday, added a tiny bit on Friday, and now, here I am on Saturday night (Sunday morning EARLY) trying to remember everything about the past three days.  Wow.

Today I woke up (Thursday) and felt like they might have to bring my work project to me in bed.  And I wasn’t the only one.  Usually, Bob is up around 5:00 or 5:30 or so.  Today, I got up just before him at 6:30.   We are all a little tired.

At Bob’s house, we got to meet our home owner today (Thursday).  Her name is Patricia and she is a friendly, energetic lady with a lot of spunk.  Her home (the one we are working on) has been robbed 4 times, and she was the victim of contractor fraud.  She has been waiting and waiting for help, and it has been long in coming.  She is so grateful to finally get some help.  And actually, she is pretty close to being able to move back in.

Howard’s team is working for Janice and Janice made them a big old bucket of seafood gumbo for us to have with out dinner tonight.  I really enjoyed it.   Lewis wasn’t thrilled about it, though.  There were crab parts in there that he thought should probably have been left out.

Thursday evening, Jeff S. was supposed to do devotions, but because he had to back out due to sickness in his family, he wasn’t there to do it.  Thanks to technology, however, we piped Jeff in via the internet and he was able to participate.  We did the same thing with Pastor Carolyn on Friday night.  

On Friday, we wrapped up our projects.  The people at Southeast Disaster Recovery want their tools back by about 3:00pm, so we have to stop early.
What Howard’s team (Howard, Ali, Ginger, Lewis, Corrine) accomplished:
Hanging a straight door in a crooked place
Hanging drywall in a jigsaw puzzle pattern complete with obstructive plumbing
Installing a vanity in a bathroom- uninstalling it, ripping up some of the tile looking for a drain, reinstalling the tile, and then installing a vanity that fits in the space
Reinstalling tile on three steps
baseboard and trim
rebuilt a screen door
reattaching the screen door frame to the cement floor of the porch
reattaching a closet door to the floor-  found 4 empty whisky bottles circa 1920ish
What Bob’s team (Bob, Rod St., Pete, Matt, Rod Sc.) accomplished:
remove and replace drywall on a whole wall with plumbing issues
installed cabinets and countertops on same wall
installed tile as a backsplash on the wall
mud and tape on other walls that needed it
sprayed texture on some walls
built a deck off the back door
reinstalled some broken tile pieces (replaced the broken ones)
cleaned up the back “yard”
tried to install a toilet and pedestal sink, but they are the wrong size
After we dropped off the tools, and equipment that we had borrowed, we drove through the Lower 9th Ward and the St. Bernard Parish.  There is a lot that has been done.  Brad Pitt’s organization has completed work on several houses (cool looking houses!)  There is more done, but still so much to be done.  When driving around the Greater New Orleans area, you see all sorts of places that are not fixed, or even started.  Many aren’t going to GET fixed.  The task seems overwhelming.
One of the things Kim did today was to interview Dale Kimball for our video.  Dale is in charge of the United Methodist Church’s response to Disaster Recovery for the state of Louisiana.  He is a highly energetic and enthusiastic speaker.
Oh-  don’t flush celery down the toilet.  It doesn’t go very well.  Even when it is cooked to mushy.  (“Rod, can you dump out the leftovers in this pan?  The celery?  I guess you could dump the whole thing down the commode.”)  So then, even if the celery appears to go down, the next person to leave anything of significance (use your imagination or don’t.) will need to use a plunger….
When we got back, we had dinner (pot roast a la Donna!).  Some walked down to the French Quarter to the Cafe Du Monde to get coffee again.  Then we walked a few blocks down Bourbon Street.  I have decided that when you have seen 1 block of Bourbon Street, you have seen them all.  And now that it’s Tuesday, I can’t remember what Pete bought….  But we took a picture that made it look like an alligator was going to eat his head.  He is actually standing on my back to pose for this picture.

This week seemed to go by a lot faster for me than previous trips.  I don’t know why that is, unless it’s because I was always thinking about what had to be done next.  When to take Kim to the next house.  When to interview Dale.  When to take the people to see the Lower 9th.  When to do this or that.  We try to get a lot of good experiences into a week.  Something to think about will be how to live in the moment.
I apologize for not getting this done sooner.  Here it is Tuesday evening after the trip and I am just getting to post for the end of the week.    I’ll post a few more observations and thoughts and highlights from the drive back.

And the next trip?  April 24-May 2.  We will be staying at the Southeast Station (the site that equipped us each day.  There are bunks and a showers and I think I saw laundry and a kitchen and etc.)  It is about  15 minutes drive from downtown, in what is known as the Gentilly neighborhood.  

Stay tuned…
Oh-  I would love to encourage to leave a comment and / or sign up to “Follow” our blog.  Tell others about what we are doing, and encourage people that want to come along next time.
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