Monday, September 1, 2008

Girding for Gustav

Evacuees at Henry S. Jacobs Camp watch TV news reports from WDSU-TV

There is no doubt that with the mandatory evacuations of both Orleans and Jefferson Parishes, the greatest confluence of members of the extended New Orleans Jewish community is right here at Henry S. Jacobs Camp in Utica, Mississippi. Worried evacuees have been crowding into the recreation hall at the camp this morning where a large screen rear projection TV with stereo speakers has been broadcasting WDSU-TV's signal over DirectTV's Channel 361. WDSU has always been my favorite New Orleans station. After all, it was the area's first television station, founded in 1948 by Edgar Stern, one of the Jewish community's best known philanthropists. I confess that I especially like Margaret Orr, an accomplished meterologist who might otherwise strike you as a soccer mom. As Gustav approached the Louisiana coastline, she provided incredibly accurate and calming reports that literally took the winds out of the alarmist we call our mayor. In case you wondered what the "C." in C. Ray Nagin stood for, I'll give you a hint. It isn't Classy! While reasonable journalists and responsible city officials were trying to be accurate and give the citizenry expectations of what was to be, Mayor Nagin was in front of the news cameras urging that citzens should "get your butts out of town." It confirms my suspicion that he is the mother of all mayors. According to reports, news from the city is good this morning. Gustav has been downgraded from a Category 3 storm to a Category 2. My good friends in Houma are taking the full force of the storm, but it has proven to be a lot less of a "mother of all storms" and more like a kid sister. There is concern still left for St. Bernard and Plaquemines Parishes because of rising water and the possibility that levees could be topped. Gustav is still a very dangerous storm and the levees will continue to be tested for another 12 hours. Yet, as was the case with Katrina, it could have been so much worse. Snake-bitten New Orleanians, familiar with what Katrina did to the levees structure were not taking any chances. Sure, the metropolitan area is largely without power. But, heck, we're used to blackouts and brownouts ever since the grid went back up after Katrina. So, the waiting game goes on here in Mississippi, but I believe we may have dodged a bullet.


carolslilacs said...

I'm glad you are safe! What neighborhood do you live in, so I can have an idea if your home is safe or not? Keep a smile in your heart!

Kosher Computing said...

Hi, Carol,
It's the Broadmoor area or, as local residents know it, the five-foot level area.