Hurricane Gustav Evacuation Update – 9-5-08


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Friends:

My husband, Antonio, commuted to work again today. Around 11:00 a.m., my mom and Clay found out that they had power. They decided to stay in Mississippi one more day to allow the house to cool down and give more time to the Parish to restore sewerage services. So they got their townhouse rental keys and moved out of our condo. They have a 2-story, 2-bedroom townhouse. Both bedrooms have en suite bathrooms and queen size beds. Mom and Clay got the master (of course), the three girls (Camrynn, Ashlynn & Jasmynn) are in the other room, and Jourdan sleeps on the sofa downstairs. This is a picture of the girls’ bedroom.

Hurricane Gustav Evacuation - The Girls' Room - 9-5-08

Hurricane Gustav Evacuation - The Girls' Room - 9-5-08

For most of the day, I was alone in the condo. Soleil and Eliana went with my mom. So I napped (a luxury) and worked (a necessity). Lots of news from home came today. Our power was restored around 6:00 p.m. Yay! There is still a sewerage conservation order in Jefferson Parish, where I live. Residents are asked not to flush, take showers, wash clothes, or allow any water to drain. This could cause sewerage to back up into residents’ homes and businesses. New Orleans has a curfew in place – 10:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. for most of the city. Several sites are distributing ice and MREs. There are still people in shelters that are unable to go home.

Hurricane Gustav Evacuation - Shelters on the News - 9-5-08

Hurricane Gustav Evacuation - Shelters on the News - 9-5-08

I spoke with my best friend, children’s musician and children’s book author Johnette Downing. She evacuated to Central Louisiana and got trapped by flood waters and had no access to Internet, television, or phones (land or cell). Fortunately, she is now home, safe and sound, in New Orleans. Her house has power and essential services. Here is a picture of Johnette in March 2008, at our house for Antonio’s Surprise Birthday Fiesta.

Johnette Downing 3-1-08

Johnette Downing 3-1-08

This evening, my mom called to let me know she had cooked garlic fried rice and homemade spaghetti. Evacuation means nothing to this woman when it comes to cooking. She can cook an awesome meal, any time, anywhere! The great thing about my Mom’s townhouse was that it had a washer and dryer. So we all washed clothes (who knows when we’ll be able to do that again?). Here I am waiting for my laundry to finish. This is a self-portrait. Say cheese!

Hurricane Gustav Evacuation - Dianne's Self Portrait 9-5-08

Hurricane Gustav Evacuation - Dianne's Self Portrait 9-5-08

After dinner, we watched Georgia’s State Superintendent of Public Schools become the first person ever to win $1,000,000 on Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader? Here’s a picture of Soleil and Eliana, snuggling on the sofa.

Hurricane Gustav Evacuation - Soleil & Eliana 9-5-08

Hurricane Gustav Evacuation - Soleil & Eliana 9-5-08

My mom caught Soleil by surprise and attacked her. I guess you’re never too old to be a kid!

Hurricane Gustav Evacuation - Nana & Soleil 9-5-08

Hurricane Gustav Evacuation - Nana & Soleil 9-5-08

We’re just an ordinary family making our way through extraordinary times. Hurricane Gustav has been a big, expensive disruption of our lives but at least we still have our lives and each other. We are blessed. Wishing you and your family many blessings…

Hurricane Gustav Evacuat9on - Sweet Dreams Eliana! 9-5-08

Hurricane Gustav Evacuat9on - Sweet Dreams Eliana! 9-5-08

Good night and sweet dreams!

Until next time…

Warmly, Dianne