Monday, August 30, 2010

Why Do They Want to Remember?

Yesterday is the day everyone talks about, but the memories for me stem from today.

Around here, it comes creeping every year like an unwanted houseguest, the anniversary of Katrina. The call for stories. The remembrances. The ceremonies.

My most vivid memories were from the next day, today, the day after. I stood in the back of the lobby of the hotel, watching the people as they glued their eyes to the large screen, wondering what was going to happen. It was as if we knew something was wrong, something bad, but we didn't know yet exactly what, or how bad.

Then, live, the first pictures of New Orleans came streaming in. Water everywhere. Familiar landscapes erased. Levies broken.

I watched the people. Stunned and shell shocked, they never expected any of that. They left for a weekend, and some have never moved back.

As we watched, the camera panned in, and a woman started crying. The young man sitting next to her, probably her son, had a look of pain I will never forget, and he was at a loss as to how to comfort her. They sat there and watched as their home, everything their family had ever worked for, burned to the water line. Right there on national television.

Why do they want us to retell? So we won't forget, and so we won't let New Orleans die.

Today is

Alexandrian New Year -- Alexandrian/Coptic Calendar, used in Egypt

Frankenstein Day (Interesting, when juxtaposed to the next entry.)

Huey P. Long Day, Louisiana

International Day of the Disappeared

Julienne Fries Day

Liberation Day -- Hong Kong

Mind Day

National Holistic Pet Day

National Toasted Marshmallow Day

Ould Lammas Fair -- Ballycastle, Ireland, through tomorrow

Santa Rosa de Lima -- Peru

St. Fiacre's Day

St. Pammachius' Day

Victory Day -- Turkey

Birthdays Today

Cameron Diaz, 1972
Peggy Lipton, 1947
Frank "Tug" McGraw, 1944
Jean-Claude Killy, 1943
Warren Buffett, 1930
Ted Williams, 1918
Fred MacMurray, 1908
Shirley Booth, 1898
Huey P. Long, 1893
Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, 1797

Today in History

European leaders, in an attempt to end war "for all time", outlaw the crossbow, 1146
One of the largest naval battles in history, during the last decade of the ailing, Mongol-led Yuan Dynasty, begins between the forces of two Chinese rebel leaders, 1363
Capture of the entire Dutch fleet by British forces under the command of Sir Ralph Abercromby and Admiral Sir Charles Mitchell, 1799
Founding of Melbourne, Australian, 1835
Founding of Houston, Texas, 1836
Hubert Cecil Booth patents a vacuum cleaner, 1901
The Lake Pontchartrain Causeway in south Louisiana, the longest bridge over water that is not also a viaduct, opens, 1956
The Hotline between the leaders of the U.S.A. and the Soviet Union goes into operation, 1963
Thurgood Marshall is confirmed as the first African American Justice of the United States Supreme Court, 1967
Guion Bluford becomes the first African American astronaut in space, 1983
NATO launches Operation Deliberate Force against Bosnian Serb forces, 1995


  1. Very touching post. For me, the five years seem to have passed quickly. For those who endure this heartache, it must feel like a century.

    How fitting that the word verification is "cryin." Or at least it was until blogger made me lose the original comment a few times. I hope this one goes through.

  2. Hilary, some people have only in the past few months been able to even repair their homes. It has been a long journey.


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