Time: 2:48am
Emotions: High Spirits, Happy, Enraged !!!!!
New Experiences So Far: Eating Craw fish and frog legs, cutting angles for floorboards, ‘The Bump’

So far this trip has been full of new experiences (as I promised myself) and different emotions.

I worked with the St. Bernard Project with building a house. My group’s job was helping with cutting wood to be used as base boards (My new ‘thing’ for today). Luckily I didn’t pull a typical ‘Shannon’ by getting hurt or doing something completely embarrassing. I finished the day with one bandage to the finger and a random red spot on the back due to failure to reach far enough around the neck with sunscreen.

By 4:30pm, when Pascal picked us up, I was ready to hit the pillow. Instead of hitting the pillow, Pascal decided to take our group for a little tour of some of the Social Housing in the Upper Ninth Ward. I no longer felt tired after driving past this housing and eventually stepping out of our van to walk through it. The government has basically refused to repair the damage done to these developmentsĀ  and basically ”pushing the lower income areas out of New Orleans!’ Prior to the activities done today I would have thought… ‘Well, the whole bottom floor was water damaged, they ought to be destroyed!’ However, after working on a damaged house today, I realize that this social housing CAN be repaired as the bottom floor is the only part of the house in poor condition, whereas, the upper floors seems to be almost mint. This left me pretty upset and the picture of these colorful housing developments has been playing over and over again in my head. It’s bothering me really. I guess working on the house with the St. Bernard Project really helped to put things into perspective. I believe that the demolition of the social housing development is a mistake and the time taken to clear this area could have been put into asking volunteers (like us Ryerson students) to help with repairing these structures.

I’ll give you a perfect example of what walking through this development was like…

Imagine a scary movie you’ve watched where the town is completely ghost-like and all that can move the shutters on the houses is the wind that travels through. This is exactly what I felt today. What really left me with a pit in my stomach was that before August 2005, there were MANY cars parked in the now EMPTY parking spaces and probably within these area were children playing ball or families eating dinner out in the backyard. I’m disturbed that the government’s refusal to repair this housing is based on class rather than damage.

Katrina markings in the Upper Ninth Ward

To finish off, Group Two you’re amazing. WHO DAT !

Shannon S.