Then it’s off to the National Guard distribution center to pick up our rations: MRE’s, water, ice, canned goods, toilet paper. MRE’s are surprisingly not half bad, and all of my neighbors gather round and share tips – like always squeeze your cheese spread into the entree, really makes it better – LOL! Then we stand in line at Winn Dixie, where guardsmen with automatic rifles allow only a certain number of people into the store – where there is really nothing to buy. Something to do anyway!
Meanwhile, the military presence is everywhere. Black Hawk and Chinook helicopters flying overhead, tent cities at every school and public building – surrounds by hundreds of deuce-and-a-half trucks, jeeps, humvees.
No mail yet, but I have been seeing UPS trucks for a couple of days now.
Today I am going to file for unemployment. We will not reopen the store. Very big sigh. It took us 9 months to do the initial build-out, and that was in good times when supplies were available. We have about a year and a half to the lease, which is most likely nullified at this point anyway. Our insurance ought to cover what we owe in payables, both long- and short-term, and we will probably work out of our warehouse (which sustained NO damage – a small bright ray there!) for a few months, helping any of our clients that we can to get their lives back on track.
Speaking of clients, we have already heard from a lot of our very good ones – but do you recall the man whose house burnded to the ground right after he had just completed redoing it? He had just gotten to the SAME point in his new construction — in Eden Isles — a neighborhood that Katrina completely levelled What rotten luck
Later I am taking an hour-trip to get somewhere that used to take me about 20 minutes. There is still flooding on the interstate, so I have to take an alternate route to bring the boys to meet MIL who will take them for a few days. And the checkpoints! PHEW! There are ID checkpoints surrounding our area, clogging traffic – that we must pass to get in.
I have to constantly keep the tv or radio tuned to information stations. That is kind of interesting too! All sorts of advisories – about how to not hurt yourself on your roof, or with your generator – blah blah blah. Numbers to call for food assistance, unemployment, finding lost loved ones or lost employees – job offers.