Hello from Hurricane Land
That was the title of the email I received from Alex's mom. You all remember my friend who lost her doberman, Alex? Well, the amazing person that she is, she has flown down to Slidell, LA with Hill Top Rescue & Relief to volunteer and help people hit by Hurricane Katrina. Here is the wonderful note she sent me and her other friends whose email addresses she could remember. I thought my readers would appreciate it.
Hey, everyone -
I'm checking in from Slidell, LA - there's a computer in the office that we can use for email, but it has to be shared among a lot of volunteers, so I'm not sure how regularly I'll be on-line. I have been here three days now, and am now an expert part of the "chainsaw crew," cutting trees off of houses. In some cases, the people haven't been able to get back inside until we remove the trees. I have yet to be assigned to the dreaded "mucking crew," but am sure that is coming - maybe tomorrow. The muckers are shoveling feet of mud out of houses, tearing out carpet and drywall, dragging out ruined appliances. It's very sad, because in some cases, the people have lost everything, all of their family treasures, everything, but they are so appreciative of the help, and some are so shocked when they ask how much it will cost and are told "nothing." We're making people cry right and left.
The volunteer camp is wonderful - very clean, very safe - and full of the nicest people (with the exception of those receiving this email, of course). Since I had no idea I would have computer access, I can only email those of your whose email addresses I remember. There are people here from all over the country, of all ages, and from all walks of life. Although the rescue group is a Church of Christ group, there are people from all religions here. My chainsaw crew has me, the catholic, Abe, who's Jewish, Tiffany and Ealer, both from the Church of Christ, and Bob, who's of no organized religion. It's very interesting that most of the rescue and relief groups down here are church based, and are accomplishing what the government is failing to do. And yet, I have yet to see any ACLU crews out there working, as they're so determined to remove religion from everything :-). Although we end our morning and evening meetings with a quick prayer (usually along the lines of "bless those we have yet to help, and keep everyone safe), this is not about religion.
However, as all of you know because you know me so well, I may have a hard time sticking to the rules of the camp: No drinking and no swearing.
I am here until Sunday, when I drive 100 miles to Mississippi and spend the rest of my time at the Best Friend's Animal Rescue site. I am looking forward to that, but am loving it here. I am already trying to figure out when I can come back - maybe between Christmas and New Year's.
This is the greatest experience. I urge you all to pack your bags and come on down. I am working like a dog, eating like a horse, sweating like a pig, and sleeping like a log - but I'm loving it. By the time we finish for the day, I think even my hair hurts - this is 1,000 time a better workout than any gym!
Well, both the lunch break and my computer time are over, so I must go. I will try to check in on-line again if I can.