More Katrina memoirs: N'Awlins Girl
N'Awlins Girl, "A Room of My Own, Part I":
The Thursday before Katrina, we were watching a small storm heading towards Florida or Alabama. Things changed the next evening. Usually, when a storm is coming, we are constantly glued to the television, sometimes for days. However, none of us were worried about this one. Even on Friday afternoon, I heard one of my co-workers say, “Are you leaving for this one?” Another answered, “Nah, no big deal. It’ll be like all the others.”She's up to part IV now. "lesbontemps" coblogs with her at "The Second Line Continues."
I left work on Friday afternoon, and on the way to my house, I heard the weather guys on the radio, and they had a bit more concern in their voice. I spent that night in stage one of hurricane-prep mode, on the phone in front of the television. [...]
Good Louisiana shoppers are raised with a mental checklist of hurricane supplies: batteries, bottled water, flashlights, candles, canned goods, etc. In Sav-A-Center, I found that I was one of the early ones this time. Usually, about three days before we get word of a storm, all of these things sell out. But this time, it was strange. The store was quiet, and there were plenty of supplies. The only other hurricane preparer that I met was from Eden Isles. We spent a few minutes discussing the importance of the scent of the candles we were purchasing. It is important – no one wants a rank-smelling candle providing your only light for days on end when your air conditioner is broken. I hope she is OK.