New Orleans: Final day

On the last day of our New Orleans service trip, we had a short work day. One crew went off to Green Light again; another crew to the Animal Rescue League of New Orleans; and Dave and I stayed at the Center for Ethical Living to finish up one last project.

The Green Light crew went off to St. Bernard Parish to install compact fluorescent bulbs. They discovered that in St. Bernard Parish, swampland comes right up to the road in many places. At the one house they managed to work at, the owner told them that that area was under ten feet of water after the hurricanes in 2005. Our crew saw bare foundations where houses were simply washed away by the flood.

This afternoon, most of our group went in to the French Quarter of New Orleans for a walking tour, though a few of us stayed behind to take a nap. Then all but three of us went to get dinner and hear live music in the French Quarter. We get up at five tomorrow morning, so I’m staying behind in the dorm so I can get enough sleep to make sure we get on the flight and make our connections; two other people who are particularly tired are also staying behind for a little sleep.

Later note: The three of us who stayed behind went for dinner at Pyramids Cafe, just five blocks from the Center for Ethical Living, for a good inexpensive dinner; then we went to The Camellia Grill to get a banana cream pie and an apple pie to bring back to share with everyone else.

Last post in the trip diary.

3 thoughts on “New Orleans: Final day

  1. Jean

    I have nothing but empathy for the people of New Orleans, but this note — “swampland comes right up to the road in many places” — makes it clear that this place should never have been developed for human habitation. It has been decimated, as you note, by the hurricanes, and as many have noted over the subsequent years, it will be hit again and again. It’s lowland, swampland, flat land, and a really dumb place to put a city.

    Not saying the current inhabitants of NOLA did that, just that *people* did that, and it was dumb.

  2. Dan

    Jean @ 1 — St. Bernard Parish is lower ground than New Orleans. A substantial part of New Orleans is high enough that it doesn’t flood.

    Another thing to think about, though: Based on your criteria, the Netherlands should not be inhabited, either. Nor should Venice. Actually, there are plenty of people who argue that the entire San Francisco Bay area should not be inhabited.

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