Be nice mother nature

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Today, after days of the weather being against us, we were all ready to get back to work on the levee.  We did, however, have something else working against us; something called 'Southern Time'.  I knew people from the north supposedly moved and talked a lot faster than the people from the south but I never realized that our sense of time is totally different.  The first days we had gone to work we had to wait a while before getting out onto the levee but I assumed it just took some time getting things in order.  After waiting at the gates of the levee for 30 minutes we learned that the person with the key was going to be about an hour late.
Trash in the wetlands

We decided to go back out to the highway to pick up some trash but that, too, ended quickly.  Our leaders decided to take us back to the Lower 9th Ward to pick up some trash there.  It was interesting to be able to walk along the rows of destroyed, abandoned, or missing houses.  Unfortunately much of the trash we were picking up was lunch containers from construction workers.  I did find a child's backpack that I think may have been there since the storm.  While we were walking around we found a school bus parked along the side of the road.  While we initially thought that was someone's home we came to find out that it was actually a group called Everybody's Kitchen staying in New Orleans cooking meals for the needy.  There was a fully functioning kitchen inside the bus and they told us that they just travel around the country make over 300 meals a day.  This was their sixth trip (I believe) to New Orleans.  It was great to see that it is possible, even after school, to continue doing service and these people are doing some amazing work.

Swamp Tour!
After getting back on the bus and eating lunch we headed back for the levee.  Because the ground was so saturated we could not take the tractor out so we instead picked up trash along the closest parts of the levee.  It was amazing to see some of the things  that were pulled out of the water.  There were washing machines, boats, coolers, etc.  Most of these things ended up here after the storm.

After working for a couple of hours we split into two groups.  One group stayed behind to continue working while my group got back on the bus to go on a swamp tour.  This was what you picture when you think of a Louisianian swamp.  The hanging trees, snakes, and alligators were all there.  It was a pretty cool experience.

Gator!!
Because it took an hour to get to and from the levee while the other group took the swamp tour we visit one of the first forts built in America.  It was never actually used but it was fun to look around.

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