So, I am on complete overload, although I have no plans, no friends and nothing to feel overwhelmed by, except for the fact that my only child left for college less than a week ago, I broke up with my boyfriend, I have to move and business completely sucks.  Now, I know that feelings aren’t facts, but when you’re having strong negative thoughts they tend to feel like facts.  So, half of the above stated isn’t true, or is half true, or is so fucking confusing that I don’t know if it’s true or not.

And my biggest news of the day was that the smoke detector on the third floor needs a new battery. Now, this may sound inane.  It is.  But the fucking thing has been beeping for the last two days since I arrived home.  It is high up on the ceiling, and the only way to get to it is on a ladder.  What makes matters worse is that the stairs up to the third floor are spiral.  So to get the ladder from the basement, up 3 flights and then up the narrow spiral staircase is a constant reminder that I alone. Really alone.  No man in my life.

The funny thing is, that if this happened two months ago it wouldn’t have made a difference, when I was dating Finn, because he is a lazy guy who never would have offered to take care of it for me.  I love him dearly, but he is lazy.  

You may ask yourself, why would she love someone who is lazy and unwilling to help her?  Well, he wasn’t lazy when I first met him.  He was helpful, protective and genuinely interested in my life and compassionate about the strains of my being a single mother.  And I was genuinely interested in him, his children and his life, all of it.  But I guess he got bored with that.  Or maybe I got bored with him.  I used to say to him when were lying in bed, “Honey, I just want to crawl up inside of you and have you protect me.”  I always felt safe with him, like he would never let anything happen to me.  He was like a protective shield for me.

What has hit me over the last year or so, is that even though I have a boyfriend, which is pathetic in and of itself because I am 48 years old, and should probably be married to a man who adores me, or at least living with him, I constantly feel alone.  I do everything alone.  For Christ’s sake, I even have sex alone.  Thank God for that fucking vibrator.  I make plans about my life as if I am single.  I live alone, I choose where I am going to live, alone.  I travel alone.  I decorate alone.  I exercise alone.  I eat alone.  I work alone.  I volunteer alone.  I campaign alone.  I take my kid to college alone.  I do things without even sharing any of it with him, because he doesn’t seem interested anymore.  .  He doesn’t know much about me anymore.   And, when I try to talk to him about topics that interest me, he doesn’t ask questions or take an interest in it, so I shut down even more…  

I think, when we first met, he sort of took care of me.  Maybe I needed him more than I do now.  I told him everything.  But as we got closer and closer, and I got to know his children, I moved further away. Not immediately of course.  I adored them and wanted to be with them.  But his ex-strife got involved and ruined any hope of us being one big happy family.  As I got to know his children things definitely changed.  I didn’t get to know them for about 2 years.  We have been together for 7+ years now.  

When we first met, we were together every minute we could be.  We would play golf.  We would make love everyday.  We would listen to good music and touch each other.  It was heaven, really.  I couldn’t believe how lucky I was…

In the beginning, he didn’t pick up his kids on Friday nights, so that he could spend Friday nights with me.   Now, he has changed that and picks them up on Fridays, which is more admirable for a father to do.  So, every other weekend I am alone.  I could be with him, but I don’t really wanna be. His boys are rowdy, insensitive and, well, probably, just boys.  Thank fucking God I had a girl.  I have a tough time dealing with the intense testosterone surges that erupt every 5 seconds.  The constant pushing and wrestling and blaming each other for stuff.  I couldn’t deal with standing in athletic fields in the cold rain, watching sci-fi movies and stepping over dirty boxers, wet towels and having to avoid smelly feet that were constantly surrounding me.

I don’t like being around his kids much.  Or should I say they don’t like being around me?  So, because of that I am uncomfortable around them.  And they are uncomfortable around me.  I could give you countless examples of how when the kids got home after spending a weekend with us, they were interrogated by their mom about what we did, and then they were belittled for any time spent with me, or anything I did.  Even regarding going shopping, going to museums, baking cookies and wrapping christmas gifts.  No matter what I did, she would find a reason to shit all over anything I did with the kids and make them feel bad about it.  Then, the next time I would see them they would avoid me like the plague.

I used to fantasize that we would be one big happy family.  That I would be close to his kids, that I would be their loving step mom.  But, I’m not.  Not that I don’t love them.  I do.  But they are afraid to love me.  They would be severely punished by their mom if they showed me love and respect.  So, I am a nobody to them.  A fixture in their Dad’s life, that gets in their way sometimes, but not much anymore.  

Finn has 5 kids.  4 boys and 1 girl.  His girl is a complete nightmare.  My biggest nightmare.  And I have a dream girl, my daughter.  My daughter is nearly 18.  His is 18, going on 6 in maturity, and 28 in promiscuity.  My daughter is no angel, by any means, but she has a nice combination of brains and bodacious-ness.  She’s a hot, smart babe.  She is going places, meeting people and has goals and aspirations.  

His daughter lays on the couch, drooling, watching lame shows like “Scrubs” and VH1.  She has never worked a day in her life. Couldn’t be bothered contributing to our family, even in the smallest ways. She hasn’t graduated high school.  She puts cigarettes out on the furniture.  She is unappreciative of anything that is done for her or given to her.  She has an undeserving sense of entitlement.  She has an arrogance that is fueled by low self esteem.  It’s difficult to be around.  

Sometimes I have this negative fantasy that she will get some lucky break, and make it big without putting in any effort.  She wants to be a famous actress.  Note the word “famous” here.  It is not the acting she wants to do, it is the famous that she wants to do.  lol.  

She doesn’t read.  So how she would memorize her lines, I don’t know.  But, boy would that piss me off if she hit it big, because she is the nastiest, laziest, self-centered  fuck I have ever met.  She is a poor little rich girl.  A sick girl.  A narcissist.  She has been diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder, so you can only imagine what a joy she is to be around.  

Anyway, according to my kid’s guy friends, I am a babe.  My daughter thinks I should be with someone who worships me, or at least appreciates my smarts, talent and beauty.  She thinks I should travel more… and soar to new heights.  My therapist thinks the same thing, and says I have untapped potential, so why don’t I think that?  

The answer is quite simply fear.  And an amazing talent for euphoric recall.  I keep hanging onto the past and how great it used to be and it precludes me from moving forward…

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I have no plans for the rest of my life…

I just got home to my empty house, except for Pillig, my golden retriever. He was happy to see me. We are sitting on the deck overlooking the Mianus River. He likes to sit in a chair next to me and watch the river and the marina action. 95 traffic is moving, which has some significance to me, because I got in 1 minute earlier than Fiona, my GPS predicted. 3:32 to be exact. Fiona was pretty good the entire route, but got a little bitchy at times while she “re-calculated”, and asked me to make a u-turn “when possible”.

Don’t know why I titled this the Final Fury, but it was taken from the title of a movie about Betty Broderick and I always loved that movie & title. It’s so dramatic.

I woke up this morning in Virginia. Put on Morning Joe, showered and got my shit together and left. I didn’t feel like listening to that blowhard Pat Buchannan talk about his stocks. I made sure, the night before, that there was a Dunkin Donuts right next to my hotel, so tea was readily available. It wasn’t Earl Grey, but it served the same purpose. I listened to a sweet conversation two people were having in Dunkin Donuts about a fair they had gone to and how the burgers were great. Small town talk. Neighborly. But I really didn’t feel like engaging with anyone. 

I hit the road at about 8 am and found myself very indecisive. I didn’t want my road trip to end, but didn’t know why. I wanted to mosey along and not leave the beautiful Shenandoah Valley. I think I may have finally spelled that right, but then again, maybe not. 

West Virginia proved to be enchantingly beautiful. 

Against Fiona’s better judgement I went off of her suggested route and took a chance. It’s not like I could get lost… I had no idea where I was… I didn’t even know what town I slept in last night or what exit it was… so, why not take a little adventure. I drove through a few small towns. I saw some antique stores and a Goodwill store (you can always find awesome shit in small towns) but I didn’t have the energy to go in any of them, and besides, I don’t need any more crap. For the past few months I have been getting rid of shit… so now is not the time to accumulate more. Affluenza almost struck again. 

I drove past a beautiful state park and happened upon the Sheandoah River. My God, and I don’t say that lightly, it was so beautiful. There was no shoulder on the road to stop on, so I had to keep going. But I just wanted to prance in the shallow water and get my feet wet. The river bed was very rocky and I could imagine myself sitting on a rock in the river and just thinking…. about the rest of my life.

For the past 18 years I have given my heart and soul to my daughter. Every decision I made was always in her best interest. Should I stay or should I go? Should I open a photography studio? Should I sue these bastards? Should I live here or live there? Should I buy this or save for college? Should I take this chance or that chance? Should I have a homebirth or a disgusting, florescent lit, germ infested, medically intervened hospital birth? Should I immunize or not immunize? Should I go to therapy or go on a vacation? Should we drive or fly? Can I drive back from New Orleans by myself? Will I get attacked by some hillbillies in the Appalachian Mountains if I drive alone? Will she be safe in New Orleans? 

I think most of my decisions have worked out pretty well. I made it home without being attacked by an old man in a shack with grey pubic hair. lol! (Lula and I would joke about that as we drove this year and last year down south). The unknown of the south is a lot scarier to me than the unknown of New York City. I always feel safe in NY, because I have urban street smarts, but I do not have rural road smarts, so that is always a factor for me when traveling outside of cities.

A woman we know in Nola told us, who has been held up by gunpoint twice, if you see a man coming toward you between the ages of 13 and 60, cross the street. That seems obvious to me. But what if you see a couple of off roaders dressed in camo, riding these 4 wheelers spattered in clay, like maniacs? Do you change lanes into on coming traffic? I don’t know…

So, now, this decision of sending my girl down to New Orleans is in the hands of the lord, I guess… , which is good, because he seems to be everywhere down south.

After a while of navigating my own path, I finally gave into Fiona and followed her prefered route. 

The whole day I felt like I was in a fog. My eyes hurt. My head felt sort of clogged. Like I was in a daze. No amount of tea would help me snap out of it. As I was rounding a curve by the beautiful river I realized what it was. I was going home to an empty house. (except for Pilly) No more girls coming home at 2 or 3 am and sitting on my bed talking to me about boys, boy troubles, etc… I used to call my bed, my office. “Come in to my office and lets talk about it”… We had a lot of good conversations in my bed. My daughter told me that I give the best advice ever. Funny, cuz I can’t figure out my own life… 

No more of “Does this outfit look okay? or do I look like a teacher?” Lula won’t be around to pluck her eyebrows in my 10x mirror. We have a love/hate relationship with the 10x mirror. lol.

So, like any health nut, who is in pain, I did what I had to do. I went to Burger King and had a huge act out. It was awesome. Whopper and fries – GO LARGE. Extra salt, too. Lots of salt. It didn’t do what I was hoping it would do. It didn’t remove my pain…

It wasn’t until I got onto I295 that I started to realize that the beautiful scenery was finished. And then when I got to NJ I knew it was completely over… sorry, to anyone in NJ. I know there are beautiful parts of Jersey, but I95 isn’t one of them. 

Lula has said to me, “Mom, there is only one shitty thing you have done to me in my life.” I would say, “Oh? What was that, Lu?” She would say, “You had me in New Jersey. Nobody wants to be born in NJ, Mom.” I would tell her, “Well, Lu, it was Hoboken, which really isn’t that Jersey-ish’. It’s right across the river from Manhattan. And Frank Sinatra was born there.” 

If that is the worst decision I made, then so be it. I can live with it. I will also mention here that she was born at home, a few doors down from Maxwells, a hip bar that is a venue to great musicians. And, it was illegal to have a homebirth in NJ at the time. They even sent investigators over to our apartment to “investigate” the situation. It went better than any hospital birth I have ever heard about. So there.

So, I am driving along I95 in NJ and I completely lose it. I mean the tears just started flowing. I couldn’t stop. My speedometer was a little high as I passed a cop, and I thought, well, if he pulls me over, I will at least be in total disrepair. My brow will be furrowed, my face salty with tears and the pimple cream that I put on a tiny zit on my cheek will be mixed with salt on my blotchy cheeks. (I was hoping the zit would be gone by the time I got to exit 4 in CT.)

I glanced in the mirror for the cop, to see if he was following me. He wasn’t. But the sight in the mirror, my face, was awful. I confirmed it. I was a disaster. I put on Lucinda Williams, and balled my eyes out. And then the phone rang, (due to the open phone lines) and it was my friend Marian. She was really sweet and I felt much better after talking to her. 

I crossed the George Washington Bridge, and thought “New York, just like I pictured it, Skyscrapers and everythang.” I knew I was going to be okay. I just needed to let it out.

My sweet girl called me a while later, and I told her I was sad about going home to an empty house, and she told me that someone was there waiting for me… Pilly. 

And he was…

Homeward bound – day 2

August 29, 2009

Well, I woke up this morning in a dank room somewhere near Chattanooga. The room was dank because I had turned the fan off because it was right above the bed… I had turned it off because I had heard, incorrectly, of course, many years ago that you can get Bells Palsy from drafts. lol! To this day, whenever I am in the direct line of a draft, I remember that and try to steer clear. lol! Now, this may seem ridiculous, and it is of course, but old habits die hard. My dear friend Laura said that drafts don’t cause Bells Palsy, so I guess I won’t have to steer clear anymore. Amazing how I have carried that thought for the last, say, 20 years. Oh, well…

I continued on my route that the two gay guys in the diner told me to take. I like to think of this route as my “queer eye for the straight gal” route. They really hit the nail on the head. The views of the mountain ridges were absolutely spectacular. I passed beautiful farms, horse paddocks and one historic battlefield after the other. I passed the home of Stonewall Jackson and the birthplace of Davy Crockett. 

The biggest challenge I had all day was trying to get my daily fix of a cup of hot tea. I don’t drink coffee, have never had a cup o’ joe. Ever. It is essential that I have my caffeine. Well, they don’t sell hot tea, anywhere, not McDonalds, or Burger King or at gas stations. I went to a McDonalds and asked for a cup of hot tea, extra large, and the girl said she never heard of it. What? You’re kidding. She then said as she scrunched her nose “where yoooou frouum, Miss?” I told her CT. She told me that they don’t sell that. So I then asked her if there was a Dunkin Donuts near by and she said she “ain’t never heard of it, either.” One gas station told me they only sell “sweet tea” in these parts, which is iced tea. No, no, no – not for me. I need my tea hot, sweet, and with lots of cream. I had to wait until about noon before I could get my tea, when I moved further up north. 

It’s now about 10:00 and I have had about 5 large teas, really large. But, I needed them to keep driving. I am somewhere in Virginia, at a Holiday Inn Express, which is a lot better than the Bates Motel last night. And there is no impending threat of Bells Palsy as far as I can tell. And no Hillbillies running around the parking lot outside my door and no crying kids. I went for a swim by the highway… lol, but it was nice to get moving after sitting all day. As I was lollying about in the pool the sun sunk below a big mountain, creating a purple and orange glow in the sky. It reminded me of the times my family drove to Florida from Chicago in our VW bus, and staying at Holiday Inns and swimming in the pools. We loved it then, and I must say, it was just as fun tonight, but I didn’t have my brothers and sisters to play with.

The wildflowers along the highway were so beautiful. Chicory, cosmos, and evening primrose. The colors were rich and vibrant. The Forsythia is starting to bloom.

Our country is beautiful. And the highway system is efficient. For such a young country we have accomplished so much. And it is “free”. Of course it is paid for by taxes. But if you have traveled to other countries and tried to drive, you may find that many places do not have such an impressive highway system. The reason I was thinking about this is that so many people are saying they don’t want government to interfere with their lives, or “get between them and their doctors”… These same people are driving on these roads day in and day out and never consider who built them. Our government built them and did a superb job. When I think of how much it cost me to re-do my driveway a few years ago, and then I look at the expansive highway system our country has I am impressed. And grateful. I saw signs at rest stops about the The Dwight D. Eisenhower National System of Interstate and Defense Highways. I never knew he was responsible for this expansive system until my daughter told me about a year ago. Sometimes I just don’t know what I was doing in school, cuz I can’t remember anything. 

The road trip bug has bitten me. I enjoy having short conversations with people at various rest stops, gas stations and re-caffeinating stops. I spoke with two country women at a gas station today about the new pennies that are in circulation. They were so sweet. They told me that they go through the register and look for the new ones to collect. They had some sweet blue grass music playing. They were simple, good country folk, with deep lines in their faces, working the register, for God knows how many years. As I was leaving I said to them “See you later”, knowing I never would. But it was a nice little exchange.

The lady at the Bates Motel was also interesting. She had long blond hair below her ass. And she was about 60. She was so friendly. She told me she hates living there, but that she could never leave because she has two grand babies there. I just can’t imagine working in the Bates Motel… but you do what you have to do to be near your loved ones and pay the bills. She also bitched about the local town council and how they were ball busters over sign rules and regulations. (her Motel sign was about the size of a twelve inch ruler, not kidding)
I told her they were the same way about signs in Greenwich. 

Then at one exit ramp there was a man sitting on a stump with a brown cardboard sign that read “HOMELESS, BROKE & HUNGRY”. He was probably about 60 years old, and had one crutch. His eyes were bright blue like a summer sky, his hair was white and his skin was thick with deep lines and whiskers and was weathered from a hard life. My thoughts about this man were many. What happened to him? Was he a Vietnam vet? Was he abused as a child? Where did he sleep? The light was a long one. so I opened my window and said hello. Asked him how he was doing and he told me he was going blind. He only had one tooth in the top of his mouth. I gave him ten bucks and told him I hope things get better for him. I asked him if I could take his picture and he obliged. 

This made me sad. I went, bought another tea, and got back on the road. 

Now, me talking to this homeless guy goes against everything I talk to my daughter about. Our running joke/dialogue/life lesson about what she is not supposed to do goes like this;

me; “Okay, Lula, what are you supposed to do when you are coming home with a bag of groceries, at night and your kitten is sitting upstairs in the window waiting for you to come in and feed him and there is a man with a broken arm trying to move furniture in the back of a truck? Do you offer to help him?”
lula; “No, Mom. I am never, ever supposed to help anyone do anything… especially help a man with a broken arm move furniture into the back of his truck.”
me; “Why not?”
lula; “Because he might abduct me and torture me and put me down a hole in the basement of his disgusting house.”
me; “Right. Good answer.”

This is a lesson straight out of the movie “Silence of the Lambs”. Scariest reality that could happen to a young naive girl. Especially one that likes to help people.

I also spoke to a young kid at a Dunkin Donuts about the new pennies. He told me that it is the first time that the same president’s image is on both sides of a coin. Being old, and half blind myself, I couldn’t tell who the hell was on the back of the new penny, but he told me in no uncertain terms it was Abe, sitting on a log, reading a book or something. Even with my reading glasses on, I couldn’t tell it was Abe. But I decided to believe him, because he was about 18 years old and probably had good vision. And I kinda like the fact that Abe is on both sides. I was born on his birthday and grew up in the Land o’ Lincoln.

There were far less Jesus signs today. They were replaced by signs like “Meth Destroys”. Oh, and I also saw an “Obama/Biden Affordable Healthcare” sign. It was a big, professional sign along the highway. I was happy to see that.

I spoke to Lula several times today and she is loving Tulane so far. She is meeting people and having a good time. She started classes today and all went fine. I am happy to say that she called me. She wanted to see how I was doing on my solo drive. Very sweet girl. ( I want to make sure that I give her space and don’t call her too often…, she beat me to the punch)

So, that’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it.

xoxo

A long trip home…

August 29, 2009

I am driving. And driving… and driving… and it gives me plenty of time to think. Coming back from New Orleans, solo.

The last couple of months have been challenging. Just trying to get a grip on not having my baby around. ;o(

I have been packing boxes, and buying stuff for college, and filling out forms and sending money, and now the day has finally come where I have to drive away from my child standing in the parking lot. Just typing that brings tears to my eyes. But they are more tears of joy, rather than sadness.

Our road trip down was fun. Except for the lunch stop at Ruby Tuesday’s. lol. Lula said it was poison. The fact that she ordered a fried plate of goodies, which should have been called the Pooh-pooh platter, is what I think the problem was. She is known to “have a delicate constitution”.

We saw all kinds of people and interesting sites. Most interesting, I think is the extremely religious message the south has for us. It is definitely God’s country. Today I saw a billboard that read “In these hard times, Jesus has the answer”. My question is this… if Jesus has the answer, then why is he holding out? Why doesn’t he just come out and tell us the answer? It seems to me that everyone, or a lot of people, are so sure that Jesus knows, but what does he know? Why the mystery? If I was that powerful and I knew, I would share the information and end the senseless poverty, suffering and killing that goes on day in and day out. Oh, well…

One of the best church signs I saw said “Do you want the best wireless connection? Prayer offers the best wireless connection there is.”

Lula & I had some good laughs. The truckers blew their horns for us. We saw some groovy 4 wheel “off roaders” in camouflage gear and lots of red clay spattered trucks. We fed a starving kitten at a gas station in Alabama. We then found a dog walking along I75 in the ditch, somewhere in Mississippi. So we had to go to the nearest exit, turn around and go back to make sure that he was okay, at Lula’s insistence. When we got back to him, he was quite sweet. He was huge. Someones hound dog I figured. He was filthy and not particularly interested in our reduced fat cheese nips. But we left them for him anyway. He seemed to know where he was going and we saw shacks up along the side of the road, where we hoped he lived. Our car was so packed, that he would never have been able to squeeze in anyway. But at least he got a reduced fat meal from two chicks from the Northeast.

We stayed in Atlanta Thursday night and it was cool. But I have to say, that after being in NYC for so many years, small big cities kind of upset me. I always think they will be bigger than they are. But then again, I am probably one of the only people who gets depressed at Disneyworld 20 minutes after I get there. It is so big and impressive, but then I start to notice all of the hot, irritable parents and their tired, hot children and think, oh, well…
I love the colors and the creativity, but I could do without all the weird family vibes and dynamics that I see going on. lol

We did have a spectacular meal in Atlanta.

The bridge on I10 going across the Mississippi is so cool. It is long and amazing. They are still rebuilding portions of it from the damage of Katrina. I still wonder today how boats float, how planes fly, how they build underwater tunnels and tunnels that go through mountains and how the hell they put up bridges. I mean I really am fascinated by this stuff. It is beyond me that people can figure this stuff out, but they can’t figure out how to get along… or provide healthcare to our nation, or how to keep jobs in this country or how to help those who have suffered great disasters such as Katrina. oh, well… I could get back to my point about Jesus, but I will leave that alone…

We arrived in New Orleans Friday night, about 30 seconds before Lula’s dad. What incredible timing. He drove up from south Florida to help out with the “move in” and to wish her luck. It was fun to have him with us. 

We stayed at the Hampton Inn on Carondolet Street, which isn’t bad. We always stay there when we go and have found it to be very nice for the price. FYI. It is in the French Quarter and very clean with big rooms and high ceilings. 

So, we had dinner in Nola Friday night with some lovely local New Orleans people we met in June. They live about 5 blocks from campus, are liberal thinkers and really fun. We ate at a great restaurant on Magazine Street called Martinique. The bread pudding was out of this world! Lula was excited about moving in and meeting new people, so we went to bed pretty early. 1:00 am.

(As I write this there are rowdy hillbillies running past my window at the Bates Motel I am staying in near Chatanooga)

Now, I was a little worried about “move in” in New Orleans. But, as luck would have it, they were having a “cold snap” and the temperature never went above 91 degrees. The move in was flawless. We unloaded the car at the curb, labeled every item with the room number, and upperclassman carried EVERYTHING up to the room. It was so easy, it was like moving when you’re pregnant. I didn’t have to lift a thing!

So, it only entailed the fun part of moving in. Setting up, decorating and getting excited about what the future holds…

Then we went to the convocation (?) which was the welcome ceremony for the new students. We were entertained by a New Orleans brass band, which was amazing. And then various deans and the school president spoke. I usually get so bored off my tits at these type of events, but this was wonderful. 

The President spoke about the admissions process of getting into Tulane. I was surprised to find out that they had over 40,000 applicants and only 1500 students got in. My baby was one of them. And, she got the Presidential Scholarship to boot. I am so proud of her. It is really quite amazing. How could I have such a smart kid? 

Each person who spoke at the Convocation (?) spoke about the need and the duty to give back to society. To contribute to the welfare of others. They said that every single student who got in showed some great level of compassion and a desire to help transform society into a better place. The president of Tulane also mentioned the book, “Three Cups of Tea”, which is about a guy who has built 175 schools for women in Afghanistan and Pakistan, a great example of how one person can make a significant difference. I couldn’t agree more. 

Tulane has incredible programs designed to teach their students to contribute to society and reap the benefits of self fulfillment through giving. I was impressed. 

This morning I took Lula out to breakfast at Slim Goodies and then we made a last minute trip to Walgreens to pick up a few items… and then I dropped her off at her new home. Our goodbye was short and sweet. We both cried, but were smiling at the same time… 

I am one lucky woman. I am also extremely grateful. 

We are only a few days away from the fourth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. The devastation to New Orleans is still very apparent. They need everything… still… 4 years later. It is a national disgrace in my eyes. 

I do hope that if you have gotten this far in reading my note, that you will consider making a donation to Katrina Corps. at http://www.katrinacorps.org. Katrina Corps is a non profit organization that is fully funded through donations. They need all the help they can get. 

Their van was stolen last week. They need to buy a new van, or get one donated, so that they can shuttle their volunteers around to go to various job sites to keep the recovery effort going. You can’t even imagine what your gift of a donation would bring to people’s lives. 

I think of what I spend at Starbucks in one week… that would amount to a nice donation, for example… 

… this is from their website.

A Week Volunteering in New Orleans

We volunteered with Katrina Corps. 
We saw people suffering, homeless, jobless, penniless and hopeless.
We saw people hurting … bad.
We feel sad because there is overwhelming work to be done and few resources. We need help.
We also saw hope and goodwill.
Would you be willing to donate…?

…Your time as a volunteer ( best experience in the world! )

…posters for the class rooms and nurses offices (contact Ray@katrinacorps.org)

…an air conditioned mini van for volunteers to get back and forth to job sites
(They currently have to rent a van which costs $120.00 per day)

…windows for schools
(I did not see one window that was transparent. Imagine your child sitting in class and not being able to see out the windows.)

…extermination services for schools (the bug problem is bad)

…construction services (Is there a slow time of year when you could donate your services?)

…$ Money $ to buy supplies such as paint, tools, ladders, etc… no donation is too small)

To donate money go directly to http://www.katrinacorps.org/
Katrina Corps is under the umbrella of the non-profit organization Pangaea Quest, which has 501(c)(3) status. Your donation is tax-deductible.
(You do not need a PayPal account to make a donation; you may use any major credit card.)
Donate by Mail: We also accept donations via check. They may be sent to:
• Katrina Corps
2710 Dauphine st.
New Orleans, LA 70117
Thank you for your time. Please look at the video.
A Week Volunteering in New Orleans

Thanks for listening, my friends…
I love you.
xoxo