Auctions for Animals

I have been focusing on hurricane relief – participating through NOLA Volunteer community forum links to many various grassroots efforts to get direct aid to the folks who need it as soon as possible. As the Biloxidoc would say – the American Red-Tape Cross can do somethings well, but in others they just don’t even begin to try. He is starting his Send Me Your Panties campaign for college sororities and fraternities to get underwear for folks living in shacks or tents in their backyards of their destroyed properties who haven’t had a change of clean clothes since Katrina/Rita. Yes, can you imagine living in the same pair of underwear for 6 weeks.

I am working with two Adopt-A-Families, trying to get them some stuff they can’t get, or that they just plain need absolutely everything.

And of course the animals – I have to ration my reading of animal stories. By now they are getting much more focused on the tragedy. Either the poor creatures are close to dying of starvation or dehydration or they were rescued early, but now have been transferred to out-of-state KILL shelters. Saved from the flood only to die before their owners can find them. I just plain don’t want to find out how bad that confusion is … I know there are some folks kicking ass on the internet to try to point folks to the information – but there are just too many databases, so much happening so fast.

I try to focus on the happy picture – the one kitty in the cage with a sign – do NOT send – owner found. I try to chant about the stories of mass death like the NOLA high school, and then move on but it is hard. How do you keep your sensibility and humanity and stay upright and not want to crawl into a hole and weep at the end of every day?

Trauma and Shock

For me the emotions hit home as soon as the “Looking For” message boards appeared on the NOLA.com site. I guess I have not forgotten the emotions of 9-11-2001 through 10-01-2001. Living with your heart in your throat every moment – seeking any news desperately and fearing it at the same time.

Such a imploding chain of little underestimations to result in such catastrophe. Like my husband, it seems the “worst case” scenario of Katrina passing by NOLA was that since they did not get a direct hit of the ‘cane itself, like Gulfport, the folks who stayed put would ride out the storm the best they could and that would be that. I cannot figure how anyone could not interpret what all that rising water meant from the breached levees. I guess Bush is as bad at geography as he is with economics and cross cultural understanding. I believe there is more than a kernel of truth in Rev. Jacksons observations of the race factor – lots of desperate poor black people in trouble – well so what – that is nothing new.

I could not sleep last night at all until I myself knew that the Guard reinforcements had landed in the city. I can’t say I feel good now. However, I have sought out and found a little niche to try to patch ordinary folks up with stuff to send with ordinary folks who can take delivery and give to shelters in LA, AL, an MS. I am heartened by the knowledge that just like after 9/11, the ordinary folks are stepping up and making it happen. In the last 48 hours it seems only us have been capable of action. The vacuum of leadership at the “high ups” has had tragic repercussions.

I cry suddenly a lot, especially about the small children perishing at the convention center and the old folks. I see my poor Dad with his feet and legs all cut up after his surgeries, and see us trapped in a hospital. It will be difficult to recover – as in fact a lot of it did not have to happen. That will make the grief recovery difficult – there is no Mohammad Atta or Osama Bin Laden to pin one’s anger on. So where does one put their rage?