Thursday, June 22, 2006

A little reflection... and other maudlin crap.

So, I'm really enjoying the new job... it's an interesting departure for me to have an office job, but I admit I miss my job at Steamboat. Yesterday, my new boss asked me about my time there, and I went on a twenty minute tirade about how cool it was to work in the heart of the french quarter, for one of the city's many cultural icons. I must have made an impression, because today he comes up to my desk and offers to get a CD of the Steamboat Natchez Caliope music to play for me if I felt homesick...

Quite the wise ass, my new boss.

For almost 7 years, twice a day, I would have to hear the "loud, happy music" of the authentic steam caliope that adorns the Steamboat Natchez. Emphasis on the loud. I would plot daily new ways to sabotage the darn thing, and have my whole staff laughing at the prospect.

I will admit that when I first came back to the point after katrina, it brought a tear to my eye to hear the caliope's dulcet tones wafting on the breeze from across the river. It was a sign of hope to me, and I realized right then that someday, my city will be back as strong and vibrant as ever.

Of course, that was before being jaded by the past few months of the realities of post-katrina New Orleans. the state of the city has not improved very much, nearing 9 months after the storm. The Regional transit authority has stopped many of the city's bus lines and is planning on ending one of the streetcar lines, the national guard has been called in to help stem a rising wave of violent crime, people are worn and beaten with their daily lives, and the wait time in Burger King is still a half hour. While basic services have been restored to most of the city, many of the flooded homes still sit untouched while their owners try to get their lives back together, to a point where they might be able to start the rebuild. The other half of the city is in the world's largest trailer park, despondant, and without much hope. Summer only brings a new wave of misery with the usual intense heat that oppresses us as it does year after year, and the daily talk around the coffee shop tends to focus on the threat of the "next big one". Word is that they will evecuate the city if even a tropical storm heads this way. Not a bad idea with all the trailers... after all, high winds and FEMA trailers just don't mix.

I'm not in one, but would be pissed if a storm knocked on on top of my house.

Right now, I'm thinking of leaving New Orleans. Life here is more costly, and annoying than I ever believed it could be. Most of my friends have left for better opportunities, and it's difficult to not think that maybe I should do the same. I like the new job, and would hate to leave, but man... life is hard right now. I long for life as the rest of the nation is experiencing, where life is going on much as it has for many years, with hurricane Katrina a memory fast fading. Somewhere, kids still play, fast food is fast, and people don't talk about last year like it's some far off magic kingdom. Basically, as much as I love my hometown, I'd have to be an idiot not to at least think about looking for greener pastures.

Maybe I just need a vacation. I would ask the new boss, but he'd probably just install a heat lamp and a palm tree around my desk, and hand me a bottle of sunscreen. It's karma, I tell ya... years of picking on my staff with my goofy sense of humor have come back to haunt me.

6 comments:

javafoofoo said...

1) The whole calliope thing? Agree with ya' wholeheartingly on missing it. (For those of y'all out of the loop, met Rob while working with the big caloop at Steamboat. Gotta tell the story one day.)

I was invited to a wedding who's reception was on the Steamboat last week, and god, was it great! A tear almost came to my eye after stepping out of the car an dhearing the calliope play! It was the first time I heard it in months. Plus, to boot, this was the first time ever that I got to actually enjoy a cruise on it; All other times were work related.

2) Please don't move to Jackson,MS. If you do, I already claimed a job babysitting Ace. :P
('Cause for you folks out there, I 100% vouch., again, on Rob's claims on how expensive the city's getting. That's why I'm heading outta NOLA next year and moving to cheap ol' Miss-suh-sip-ee)

Melinda Barton said...

You know, the D.C. area is quite lovely this time of year. Things are quite pricey here, but the job market's great. You can make pretty good money temping while you look for the dream job. Also, the official HQ of The Cult of Melinda has been moved here. If you set up your CWO HQ here, then together, we can conquer the nation and from there, the world. bwahahahahahaha!!!!!!!

Becca said...

Was that Cah-LIE-oh-PEE or CAH-lee-OHP?

I remember having conversations with you with that music blaring. Yelling and waving our arms a lot. It was like having a conversation with an Italian guy from NY or something.

I heard about the occupation of the city by our Nat’l Guard Peacekeeping Forces from a few other folks.

A bunch of my friend’s relatives are leaving New Orleans to move to San Diego, where he is. You aren’t the only one who is thinking such thoughts.

Stacey said...

You know, you had a lot of these thoughts before Katrina. Your overall unhappiness in your general situation is not new. I don't have any suggestions... just wanted to point that out.

Canardius said...

Since I recently joined the order of the crown of charlemagne, I should get invited to their annual meeting next april in Washington, D. C. At which point Rob can come with me, and along the way to my meeting we can establish the CWO.

With C. Julius Robtavianus and Tiberius Canardius as censors of this order, of course. To admit those lucky few deemed worthy.

But I find Rob's present malaise to be of a differrent cause than the pre-K despondency. That was over his lack of a love life worthy of an Italian; this one has to do with a city still staggering to rise. And his post K vision quest was his mode of grieving, as Zorba would have gone to a dance or the Old Man might go run with bulls after losing his Marlin to all the predators of the ocean.

He doesnt often do things in half measures... were he to move it wouldnot be to midling Mississippi, but farther. A capital M move. A Move that nature could stand up and say, "a man moved thus."

StopSpamming said...

Where ever you go, I'll still be next door. Hmmm, I don't know if that is a good thing , or a bad thing :)