One year ago today, we moved back into our home.
I’ve been thinking about that time quite a bit recently, in part because I’m trying to reconstruct a bit of narrative ROX #95, but also just because. I think last December was probably the strangest month of my life. Living without electricity, with no neighbors (or lights) for blocks and blocks in any direction. Those were spooky times.
Yet they were also strangely compelling times. People often ask if we were afraid, but we weren’t. We were nervous about the future of New Orleans, of course. It was actually kind of peaceful, in a sad way. We felt like brave urban pioneers. And I think it brought Xy and I closer together. Don’t get me wrong: It was no picnic. It was very unsettling. I wouldn’t want to experience that again. I’d rather just remember it.
So: A year later, where do we find ourselves? There’s been progress, but not as much as one might hope. At least we have some neighbors. I’d guess about a quarter of surrounding homes are occupied. At least we have electricity (in about a quarter of our house). Our gas heat is still working, but I hear other folks are having recurrent problems with water in their gas lines. I’m not drinking as heavily as I was a year ago, and that seems healthier. One thing that hasn’t changed: We’re still worried about the future of this city and our neighborhood.