My cousins from New Orleans are here again. We got together with them a couple years ago when they were bringing the oldest daughter to college in Tampa. She's a senior this year and they were here to help her furnish and get settled in an apartment.
It was fun reminiscing about New Orleans and interesting to hear of the progress post Katrina. All three homes were destroyed by the storm but everyone is in a new house and impressed by some of the progress made. Granted, there are still areas that haven't been rebuilt but from what I heard the rebuilding was an opportunity to update and improve.
My cousins were talking about City Park and how, because of Katrina, many people and organizations supported upgrades to the park as well as restoration and replanting of the old oaks. This probably would not have happened without the storm, or if so, would be slower.
Of the three schools I attended while living there (St. Anthony, St. Leo the Great, and Sherwood Forrest) only Sherwood Forrest remains closed. My cousin's estimate is 80% is rebuilt and bragged about the number of unique restaurants and shops that have appeared in the rebuild.
I'm excited to go visit - it's been a very long time. Jerry's never been. I think he will have a blast.
(Photo is my cousin Bill's wife Thania on the right; her daughter, who is my first cousin once removed, Denise, in the center; her husband Chris on the left. The twins are Margarette and Luke and the little guy is Calib - my first cousins twice removed.)