It's too overwhelming for me to blog about; once I'd start, I wouldn't be able to write about anything else. So this is my only post on it, and then I will not blog again for a long time, but will keep my nose to the grindstone of homeschooling and homemaking, and praying for God to have mercy on all those wretched souls trying to survive the aftermath of Katrina.
I'm posting this because it's the only shred of hope I've found in this whole awful thing so far.
One man was lying partway on a cot, his legs flopped off the side, a forgotten blood pressure monitor attached to his right arm. Some people had wrapped plastic bags on their feet to escape the urine and wastewater seeping from piles of trash. Others, fearing the onset of disease, had surgical masks over their mouths. An alarm had been going off for more than 24 hours and no one knew how to turn it off.Read the whole article.
Suddenly, incongruously, the first notes of Bach's Sonata No. 1 in G minor," the Adagio, pierced the desperation.
Samuel Thompson, 34, is trying to make it as a professional violinist. He had grabbed his instrument — made in 1996 by a Boston woman — as he fled the youth hostel Sunday where he had been staying in New Orleans for the last two months.
"It's the most important thing I own," he said.
He had guarded it carefully and hadn't taken it out until Wednesday afternoon, when he was able to move from the Superdome into the New Orleans Arena, far safer accommodations. He rested the black case on a table next to a man with no legs in a wheelchair and a pile of trash and boxes, and gingerly popped open the two locks. He lifted the violin out of the red velvet encasement and held it to his neck.
Thompson closed his eyes and leaned into each stretch of the bow as he played mournfully. A woman eating crackers and sitting where a vendor typically sold pizza watched him intently. A National Guard soldier applauded quietly when the song ended, and Thompson nodded his head and began another piece, the Andante from Bach's Sonata in A minor.
Thompson's family in Charleston, S.C., has no idea where he is and whether he is alive. Thompson figures he is safe for now and will get in touch when he can. In the meantime he will play, and once in a while someone at the sports complex will manage a smile.
"These people have nothing," he said. "I have a violin. And I should play for them. They should have something."