New Orleans is everything I thought it would be and so much more…  While the food, weather and people are as lovely as can be, the destruction is as awful as can be.   The contradictions are quite surprising and definitely take longer to process than I originally presumed.  It’s surprising how one minute I’m doing really well (emotionally) and then the next I’m in tears.

Today we were invited to enjoy a home cooked meal by a lady whom had her house finished by members of the St. Bernard Project.  She was more than welcoming and generous, just lovely and full of energy.  It almost made me dizzy watching her run from room to room making sure that everyone had enough to eat and drink and were comfortable.  She had photo albums filled with before and after pictures of her house and the houses of her family and friends. I felt so lucky to be able to meet her and listen to her story.  It made everything seem so much more real.

It also certainly helped to keep me motivated.  As it turns out, I know nothing more repetitive than mold remediation!  Going up and down and side to side with a wire brush on every single stud in the house is certainly energy draining.  Our group is great though, consisting of really amazing people.  Motivation and encouragement is never sparse and everyone really manages to keep the mood light and positive.

I’m both excited and anxious as certainly over the next two weeks there will be much more to take in, experience and see…