So a few months ago, this writer moved to New Orleans. Back to Dixie, our birthplace, but a couple hundred miles further South.
Bought a gutted house in the Lower 9th Ward. Not sure what we’re doing here … but at least it’s something different. And familiar.
An hour outside Moblie, on the way down the I-65 from the East Coast, the land gets a lot flatter really quickly. Swaths of stumpy ex-forests line the highway, clear-cut by hurricanes Katrina and Gustav. The trees have grown back some, maybe all for naught — maybe just to get swiped clean again.
Then, on the I-10 right before the big scary Lake Pontchartrain Causeway, the roads rise above the terrain, a sure sign we’re coming to the end of the earth. “Marssshhh” is the sound of land hitting water.
Why the F are we moving here? Will any one of the rainbows we chased end in a pot of something, anything, or will we drown first? … More practically, is it wise or folly to ride out a recession in the most recessed place there is?
Perhaps it’s instantly home-feeling to us because of our longtime love affair with the Mississippi, raised in Memphis as we were. Something to do with this being the view a few steps from our back yard.
There is no desire or strong grasping. Ideally, anyway. There is only the hope of survival in the now-here. Safety in the eye of the storm. Farewell to the family who still do amazing stuff way far away. We’re setting up a satellite camp. The well ran dry, but the river never will.
Whether we rise to the top and float is another matter entirely.
Lovely, lovely filth. Chaos provides.
Follow Summer Burkes on Twitter.