The week so far although it has been amazing it has been a very emotional experience. For those of you who know me I am not one who does well with physical labour. Yet I have been trying very hard to push myself and make myself work harder than the day before. I am not the type to leave a project undone but the week has taught me that I need to know my limits and know when my body has had enough. The work itself is physically draining but it is also emotionally draining. When you drive down the street and see the empty lots and you knew that a before Katrina there once was a home there and a family.
On day one my group was helping Miss Nikki build a rain garden. She had gone ahead and bought the empty lot next to her where her neighbour’s house once was. This is part of the lot next door program, where the home owner can buy the empty lot from the government for a cheaper price. I find that the program and the concept of owning the lot next door is get however when we digging the hole I found it a little eerie. When the house that was once there was bulldozed they simply did it quickly and flattened the land out and grass was placed on top. It almost seems like their putting a Band-Aid over the problem and ignoring the fact that at one point there was life there, a home and a family. As we dug in that hole we began to find signs of life. Signs that there once was a family there, digging up curlers, a hammer, and pieces of broken tile. The physical labour of actually digging that hole killed my body by the emotional aspect of that job took a getter tool on me.
On a positive side everyone needs a small break from work, and with all the emotional labour that goes on when we are on different job sites it’s nice to take a break and breath and have a good laugh.
That is why we had a ………….Swamp Day!!!!!
I have been waiting for Swamp Day for a long time. It has been something I’ve looking forward to even before I came down to New Orleans. The idea of seeing the gators swimming in the water made me so happy!! I will admit I was basically a big kid!! We were split into two different groups and went onto air boats. I have always seen those boats on tv shows and could not wait to get on that! We saw so many gators and learned about the swamp and how the gators live in their natural habit. But the best part of all was that we were all able to hold a baby gator!!!!!!
I’m having an amazing time, making lifetime friendships and making a huge change within NOLA.