I-F: Remember

Please remember New Orleans...

I am staying in New Orleans for the next few weeks, to see the Jazz festival and to get a good dose of Andy's favourite city in the world. This is my 3rd time here, and walking around the French Quarter, you would never know anything had happened. But if you look a bit closer, you can see it everywhere. Many rebuilt, repainted buildings for sale. Lots with spraypainted markings by rescuers to show they had visited there. T-shirts saying 'make levees, not war.'

At the Jazz Festival, almost every musician makes some reference to Katrina. it is still very recent. Most people have been affected deeply in some way and the emotions are still quite raw. We walked into Irvin Mayfield's New Orleans Jazz Orchestra just in time to hear him play a hymn he wrote for his father who drowned in the storm and whose body was never found. it's so heartbreaking that this could happen to such an amazing, unique city and that it's own government hasn't helped it pick up the pieces. There is a lot of resentment and bitterness too. But somehow everyone seems to rise above that and the people who are here do everything they can, and the people who were displaced still love New Orleans.

So this is my hommage to NOLA. (New Orleans, Louisana.) The Fleur de Lys has become a really strong symbol for the city.

I know there is always the next crisis taking media attention, but I hope we can all remember this city from time to time and even help out once in a while, whether it's literally rebuilding houses, or buying a new orleans' musician's CD. every little bit helps.

May it always keep its head above water....