September 9, 2016:
On a sweltering Friday, a year ago today, I briskly packed boxes — alongside Larry and the guys from Precision Moving — to get stuff out of a crumbling house in New Orleans.
Fortunately, it wasn’t a natural disaster like a flood or hurricane, but it was our family disaster that could have been a tragedy. On August 28, 2015, a 22-year-old drunk hit our house while driving 80 miles per hour, knocking it off a brick-pier foundation (that had survived major hurricanes) and cracking the house in two.
School in New Orleans starts in August and my teacher daughter and her teacher friend/roommate had to be back at work in their classrooms after a few days off; they needed me to move their stuff out of a dangerously precarious home.
Each of them was suffering PTSD from the crash, as well as other whip-lash related injuries, caused by the truck ramming into the living room wall and throwing them four feet off the couch that fateful night.
Fortunately, no one in the house was maimed or killed, but the ramifications of that drunk driver’s mayhem were felt across the entire neighborhood: debris from the crash injured bystanders on the sidewalk, electric poles cracked in half causing power outages for thousands, and several parked cars were totaled.
Our little family house near the muddy Mississippi, bought just six months earlier, was in shambles.
Not surprisingly (when you see this photo) it was a year-long struggle to heal from the horrors of that night.
My musingly blog, my New Orleans travel writing, my creative expressions have all been sorely neglected since the accident. (My brilliant cousin suggested that I keep a journal about this incident, and its implications, but I was too distracted with insurance firms, attorneys and builders to keep that commitment.)
So, dear musingly readers, I hope you stay with me for a series of much-needed musings on the year-long saga of healing and rebuilding.