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Re : Cara

Posted: Fri Sep 16, 2005 10:22 am
by cara
Yes, it seems that they will be able to move back next week but there will be no conveniences that they are used to...there's a curfew from 8pm to 5 am, limited grocery stores open, and a few fast food restaurants open. And that's it.

My grandmother's house still has 6 ft of water in the street. I looked at the updated maps yesterday.

Salaries down here are generally low. The cost of living is not high here at all but the property is a rip off. New Orleans is (was) worse. For property that will probably flood, it is SO high. My parents' 1200 sq ft, 3 bd, 2 bath house with a TINY yard appraised for $192,000. We sit on an acre lot with 1500 sq ft, 3 bd, 2 bath and we paid $118,000. Good thing is that the prices are going up around our house. The house across the street sold in Jan for $148,000. So we're already loooking at a $30,000 profit if we sell.

Now, my company has contracted with the Army Corps of Engineers and has promised 60 trained employees for recovery efforts. Well I am 40 hour HAZWOPER trained so guess who gets to go de-muck the Big Easy? You got it. Hopefully, they will decide to leave me here, there's always that chance. Pray for me, girls!!!

Re : Cara

Posted: Thu Sep 15, 2005 06:43 pm
by akemt
There are two sides to it being expensive here though, Cara.

An unfurnished studio can easily run you $700/mo or more. BUT, on average people get paid much more here. Everything is more expensive...even the fish! Just not the fishing liscenses! LOL

I'm glad that your mother is getting to go clean her house. How awful that all this happened. I hope that your family will continue to do well,

Re : Cara

Posted: Thu Sep 15, 2005 05:28 pm
by mamc2003
Cara, I didn't realize housing was so expensive. The house we're in now is 2000 sq feet, 4bd 3bath, large kitchen and two dens and the rent is $500/mo. There's also a large fenced in backyard. Real estate prices in Vidalia have just now started getting outrageous for bought home, but I didn't think it went that way for rentals.

You should have seen the lines in Natchez today! The Red Cross has been at the new Convention Center handing out emergency checks to anyone who has been affected by the storm. I think you get $300 per person in your household. Since Monday the line has gone from the CC down Canal Street to the Corner bar, then halfway down that first block(just a little beyond Kelly's Kids). They have handed out more than 300 checks in the first 35 minutes. Today the line went to Kelly's Kids, then all the way up to the Catholic Church, and all the way back over to King's Tavern. It's a mess. There had to be more than a few thousand people standing in line. Before today they were through by lunchtime. When I got to work at 3, the line was still as long. People are staying overnight in the roads just to get through the line. The paper said one man went through the line 7 times before he was caught "double dipping" and was sent to jail.

Also, I found something today that I thought you might like. It was in the Times Picyaune.

We're South Louisiana

Dear America,

I suppose we should introduce ourselves: We're South Louisiana.

We have arrived on your doorstep on short notice and we apologize for that, but we never were much for waiting around for invitations. We're not much on formalities like that.

And we might be staying around your town for a while, enrolling in your schools and looking for jobs, so we wanted to tell you a few things about us. We know you didn't ask for this and neither did we, so we're just going to have to make the best of it.

First of all, we thank you. For your money, your water, your food, your prayers, your boats and buses and the men and women of your National Guards, fire departments, hospitals and everyone else who has come to our rescue.

We're a fiercely proud and independent people, and we don't cotton much to outside interference, but we're not ashamed to accept help when we need it.
And right now, we need it.

Just don't get carried away. For instance, once we get around to fishing again, don't try to tell us what kind of lures work best in your waters. We're not going to listen. We're stubborn that way.

You probably already know that we talk funny and listen to strange music and eat things you'd probably hire an exterminator to get out of your yard.

We dance even if there's no radio. We drink at funerals. We talk too much and laugh too loud and live too large and, frankly, we're suspicious of others who don't. But we'll try not to judge you while we're in your town.

Everybody loves their home, we know that. But we love South Louisiana with a ferocity that borders on the pathological. Sometimes we bury our dead in LSU sweatshirts.

Often we don't make sense. You may wonder why, for instance - if we could only carry one small bag of belongings with us on our journey to your state - why in God's name did we bring a pair of shrimp boots?

We can't really explain that. It is what it is.

You've probably heard that many of us stayed behind. As bad as it is, many of us cannot fathom a life outside of our border, out in that place we call Elsewhere.

The only way you could understand that is if you have been there, and so many of you have. So you realize that when you strip away all the craziness and bars and parades and music and architecture and all that hooey, the best thing about where we come from is us.

We are what made this place a national treasure. We're good people. And
don't be afraid to ask us how to pronounce our names. It happens all the time.

When you meet us now and you look into our eyes, you will see the saddest story ever told. Our hearts are broken into a thousand pieces.

But don't pity us. We're gonna make it. We're resilient. After all, we've been rooting for the Saints for 35 years. That's got to count for something.

OK, maybe something else you should know is that we make jokes at inappropriate times.

But what the *.

And one more thing: In our part of the country, we're used to having visitors. It's our way of life.

So when all this is over and we move back home, we will repay to you the hospitality and generosity of spirit you offer to us in this season of our despair.

That is our promise. That is our faith.

Re : Cara

Posted: Thu Sep 15, 2005 08:57 am
by cara
Mike was paying about that much for an unfurnished house when we were dating. He and his brother and another guy from Ferriday were living together. Coincidentally, it was directly next door to one of our serial killers. (That was a shock, let me tell you)

But $1800 for a house is not that unheard of. Granted, I wouldn't pay that but that's just me! Rental property is a little high here b/c of the university. One of my best friends went to school in Hammond and her share of the rent was $92. My share in BR was $265. Then it went up as my roommates dwindled down. I think my last apartment was $700 for 2 people. The sad thing is, someone will read this and think that's cheap!!

Re : Cara

Posted: Wed Sep 14, 2005 05:03 pm
by mamc2003
My friend who just moved to CO kept their house here in case they decided to move back home. They didn't take any of their stuff since that's not the final moving place. The realtor told her they could get $1800 for their furnished house. It's 3 bedroom 1.5 bath and probably has between 1200-1500 square feet. My mom said we should move back in with them and rent our house for that. I couldn't imagine paying that much rent, but they say people are doing it b/c there's no more houses for sale and the renters won't be here forever. Who knows.

Cara, glad to see things are getting back to normal. Have a good time Friday night with the family.

Re : Cara

Posted: Wed Sep 14, 2005 01:00 pm
by cara

The guy down the street is selling his house to a neighbor and the realtor completely underestimated his house. She said that she and other realtors were afraid of going to the pen for price gouging on houses. So they aren't estimating their worth at what they usually do. But, on the other hand, I think the price wars between individual people is probably what's driving the costs up. You know, people outbidding each other to get a house.

All I know is that the traffic is horrid and it takes FOREVER to get anywhere. Lines are long everywhere and Wal Mart isn't staying open all night anymore. They are selling so much stuff that they need all night to restock.

The family is all ok. My mom is going to start cleaning up the house this weekend and she'll still be living with us during the week. Mike gets a day off on Friday and she's going to NO, so we will have a night together as a little family for the first time in 3 weeks!

Thanks for thinking of us....we're hanging in it's sort of a routine so it's not so bad. I just need to get back into my exercise pattern!!


Posted: Wed Sep 14, 2005 12:00 am
by alexp
How are things going? Better, I hope...I have been thinking about you guys[:)].

We are hearing all kinds of crazy rumors up here about the BTR area -such as that housing prices have risen to near-California levels.