Monday, September 01, 2008

Monday, September 1st - Covering New Orleans, Louisiana

Tommy and I headed off for Labor Day weekend in NOLA on Friday morning, aware that Gustav was headed that general direction, but not overly worried - we've been through hurricanes before and knew we would have plenty of time to get out should we need to. We arrived Friday afternoon, to be told that during our drive down, the mayor had ordered hotels closed on Saturday. Fortunately, we had friends staying in the quarter in a condo so we bunked with them Saturday night and we all came home a day early on Sunday as the city emptied out.

The weather was fine. The city was full of gay men celebrating Southern Decadence and we all had a good time, although there was a bit of a feeling of the last few scenes of 'Cabaret' but with Gustav waiting in the wings rather than the Nazis. Things were shutting down all through Saturday and, by Sunday morning, pretty much everything was shut down and the entire metro area decamped away from the coast. We joined 100,000 or so of our closest friends on I-59 north and the usual six hour trip took about seventeen.

Being a hurricane evacuee was something of an experience and, while not especially fun, I can now add it to my list of life experiences. At least the storm does not seem to have been terribly significant and we're planning on doing another group NOLA trip for Hallowe'en.