Yes, I evacuated from Rita and YES I am fine and so are my family and my friends. Thank you for asking. Everyone has checked in and they are fine. Now, me I evacuated for a completely different reason than most. Once Rita fever got hot, around noonish Wed it was clear this whole city was about to shut the shyt down and brace for a very bad hurricane. Needless to say they all were watching Channel 2 news. (Can I just tell you how incredibly sensational our local NBC affiliate is. OMG!! If they aren’t dizzying me with their graphics they are making me Chicken Little with their tales of how the sky is falling. I was perfectly calm about this storm and I can pinpoint two times when channel 2 had me thinking this was the END OF THE WORLD. I had to slap myself back into reality. They really are the worst of all the news stations when it comes to this sort of thing. They are the number 1 purveyors of pandemonium HANDS DOWN- anywho). I decided I have two days off because our office shut it down on Wed. and who wants to be stuck in a city with nothing opened and no electricity (which I assumed I wouldn’t have on Saturday once Rita hit). Anyway I made my plans to head out to my second home now, Baton Rouge. Don’t tell anyone I said that was my second home. I will deny it. Now before you get your panties all in a wad, Baton Rouge is equal distance from Lake Charles as Houston. I never thought Houston was going to be wiped off the map. I also knew that even the worst case scenario did not have Rita turning towards NO. That would have been the only true danger for Baton Rouge. As far as I was concerned there was no difference between staying in BR and Houston. So I thought if, I were to be stranded in a storm there are only a few people I would like to be stranded with and my family is not at the top of the list (LOL!! No they are pretty high on my list but not as high as my friend, Da Law, his new hasn’t rubbed off yet J). So I headed east late Wed. About an hour after I left, my mom, brother, aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandmother left for Tyler. I arrived in BR right on time (about a 4 hour trip). My mom arrived in Tyler 23 hours after her departure (looks like I made the right choice-23 hours in the car with my brother- NO THANK YOU, I’ll pass). She and the rest of the Houston Metropolitan area were trying to go north young man go north. I know sucks huh? Anyway, Rita took a turn on Thursday and it was evident she was not going to hit Matagorda Bay anymore. She was determined to finish up what her gal Katrina started, meaning LA. Can I just tell you that, I think Gov Blanco has set women politicians back about 20 years! OMG After being exposed to this woman for 4 more days, she has ensured that I will never be a fan of hers. The term USELESS and blubbering idiot come to mind. She delivers orders like a pre-k teacher (I learned later she was a teacher pre-politics). Let me just say this now, she is no Ann Richards. LOL!! I was more impressed with the Mayor of Galveston at least she was authoratative in tone!
What you say… Rita is looking for Me??
So Rita turned towards the TX/LA border, giving LA the wet side of the storm. If I didn’t know better I would say it was something about me that made these storms head for the LA coast. Last time Katrina was on her way to the FL panhandle when I left for BR only to turn towards NO unexpectedly and now Rita she was on her way to Matagorda when I left for BR only to turn towards Lake Charles, unexpectedly (when I left I think 6 of the 8 models had Rita making landfall in Matagorda). Well folks looks like Rita took the least modeled path and turned towards the LA coast. Yeah!! At least, I’ll have a home to return to, well if I have a road to return on (more on that later). I never was really worried about Rita taking BR out, like I said it’s like Houston. The rain started late Thursday night/Friday morning. It was really nothing more than a serious rainy day in the H. I went out Friday to a local coffee shop to check e-mail and try to finish some work. There was a tornado warning for a few Parishes, but like I said nothing more than a severe weather day in the H. I came home Friday night made dinner and helped Da Law unpack his new apartment (more on him later). So all and all, Rita was just a big rainmaker for BR she dropped 9.54 inches of rain on the city, almost as much as the tears shed by Gov Blanco (that woman is always crying or finishing a cry-<EYE ROLL> someone please slap her and tell her she has a state to run). Since I was in LA I did get to see all the coverage on the re-flooding of St Bernard Parish and the Lower 9th Ward. It was interesting watching the coverage of the flooding. The local news was a lot better than the national news, way more informative and a lot less Chicken Little. The levies actually got overrun because of wind but then the overrunning eventually eroded away some of the patch work gravel and breached a few of the levies again. Anyway, like I said the NO situation was not nearly as disastrous as CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News made it seem. Those homes that re-flooded were all ready toast, but it was still unfortunate that the re-flooding happened. There seem to be little to no new damage in the NO according to the local news.
Beautiful and Uncomplicated
Now, if you read regularly you know what that phrase means. Yep!! It still is. I had fun in BR. Nothing like 5 nights and 4 days to see if someone has what it takes. LOL!! It was really cool. I was pretty impressed. I came in the middle of life which is always fun. At this point I can’t say there are too many people that I would want to spend that kind of time with or vice-versa. I definitely liked seeing what his life is like during the week. I must say I am tired just from watching him; I was also equally impressed that he manages to do everything he does and seems to excel at all of it. He also looks great in a suit too! He just keeps unknowingly adding to his stock. So what did you do in the BR, OG? I’m glad you asked me. The BR is a mix between Austin and Baytown. I say Baytown because they are roughly the same size and about 45mins to an hour away from a hip happening city. Well at least BR use to be 45minutes away from a hip happening city. Now its 45 minutes away from a waterlogged desolate Nawlins. I say Austin because BR is a college town home of LSU and let me tell you they LOVE their Tigers. There are other colleges here (namely Southern, a Historically Black University) but you wouldn’t know it from first glance this is all about the purple and gold baby! So, urban nightlife in BR was really funny. The strangest places are hot spots for dancing in BR, like Thursday we went to Sullivan’s. Here in H-town, Sullivan’s Ringside is a jazz spot in the BR there are two rooms the bar at Sullivan’s plays the Jazz and the Ringside has a live acid/rock cover band that also plays NO Bounce they spin hip-hop when the band takes a break. When we walked in the band was playing Back Dat Azz Up (a personal favorite!!). Picture Limp Bizkit doing Juvenile only not that good! It was still fun. They followed this with some Van Halen song I must have been too um….urban… to know. I was surprised ‘cause my music diversity often leaves my non-urban friends in awe. ANYWAY Thursday night in BR was still lots of fun. Its all about the company you keep.
There were other highlights for the visit like a fish fry with some Evacuees, Survivors, Former New Orleanians (FNO), or whatever you want to call ‘em (as long as it ain’t Refugees) who have relocated to the BR. The funniest line from that night was when one of the FNO’s goes I asked this girl where they went for fun in the BR and she looked at me and said New Orleans. LMAO!! Or maybe it was when this dude who produces beats on his play station (long story) told me how the Roots disappointed him. I was like no comment. I thought you said the Roots have lost it? Naw you couldn’t have, you make beats on a play station man.
We club hopped on Saturday which was fun and studied on Sunday (well I didn’t study- I laid around, went to Target, and watched Desperate Housewives and Crossing Jordan). Ok…Ok maybe BR was just fun because of the company, now that I look at the highlights of my trip in black and white. Not a lot of highs in those lights.
Safe and Sound and Back To The Grind.
Needless to say I am safe and sound and back to the fabulous grind known as my life in H-town. I made it home as expected. There was one detour, I-10E was closed at that BIG OL bridge in Lake Charles. I had to take a detour on 210W. It took me on the outskirts of the devastation. Let me tell you that it didn’t look pretty at all. Lots of shingleless roofs and lots of downed everything (trees, billboards, road signs, etc). All exits where manned by the National Guard. Crazy huh. I was thinking basically LA is cut off from the rest of the nation via I-10. You have to take detours on both the East and the West end of 1-10 to get to LA. WOW!
I’d like to thank Mayor White for the impromptu vacation. I also hope that there will be one time in the near future that I get to see the Da Law with out a natural disaster threatening one or both of our states of residence. I also hope that next time the mayor is clearer in his evac orders. It is obvious the mayor is not use to people listening to his orders. I really don’t fault him too much, I mean in a pre-Katrina world Mayor White’s orders to evacuate would not have been taken so seriously, however everyone had images of the hopelessness and helplessness of LA, MS, and AL fresh on their minds. Hopefully, there won’t be a next time any time soon, however we still got 2 full months of hurricane season to go, so who knows. Practice makes perfect and at least we all know how to line up for gas. Right?
PS Hey Buschick…wassup up wit ya?