The French Quarter pretty much looks
like it always has.
It wasn’t particularly hard hit and life appears
(One amazing thing for us was that we found a place to
parallel park the big rig so we were able to walk around the French Quarter.
What are the odds of that?)
Unfortunately, Bobbie ended up with food poisoning
and spent the next several days severely ill.
Outside the French Quarter life is a different picture. We visited the Lower Ninth Ward which had been particularly hard hit. Before Katrina, the Ninth Ward was a packed, vibrant, and often dangerous area. Predominately black, the area had a reputation for being unsafe for residents and tourists alike. The term ‘urban blight’ certainly applied to the run-down buildings and occasional abandoned building. But the area was densely populated and seemed to have its own strong of community.
Today the Ninth Ward is largely unrecognizable. Entire blocks are condemned. Houses have been razed, turning what was once a dense block of houses into an empty concrete patchwork open field. For many houses that still stand, the spray painted markings on the outside serve as chilling reminders where rescuers noted the number and room location of the dead. Schools, shops, and more are nearly all gone. More than 3 years later it still looks like a disaster or even a war zone.
Three years after Katrina, New Orleans is still one of the world’s great cities. If New Orleans manages to rebuild there is no question it will be better than ever, but, but significant challenges remain.