Flowers for the children.

These flowers.

These flowers are for all the children who have been harmed in any way from this almost constant spate of mass shootings. They are for those who died in their places of worship. Two safe places that are no longer safe.

Seeing the pictures of the children coming out of their school with their arms raised yesterday, just about broke me. It’s true. We are seeing this on an almost weekly basis. My prayer for myself is that I don’t become jaded. That I don’t get so much into myself that I don’t see the pain in others. And, that once in a while, I see the joy in others.

These days it seems like seeing joy is getting harder and harder to find. That isn’t right. Children should be nothing but joy. Oh sure, they have their meltdowns. Even that is a kind of joy. It’s part of their growth. However, when I talk to little ones, they seem to have a kind of resignation in their voice. They talk about their active shooter drills. They know that, not that it might come, but that it will come.

That’s horrible. It makes me so sad. My eyes are wet as I write.

I know that we can’t go back in time. But, the worst thing I feared when I was growing up was my parents wrath for doing something I shouldn’t. Even that was gentle.

Now?

I don’t know what to do. It’s well above my pay grade. I know that we can “vote the bastards out,” but can we change the trajectory that we seem to be headed on? I think that comes in small steps. Maybe be running for office in some teeny tiny election. Fix what we can fix. Hope that it moves upward.

An old friend of mine tweeted yesterday about wanting some big things to be fixed. Now. I replied, “run for office.” She thinks I’m kidding. I’m not. She’s smart, talented, a life long learner. No. She won’t fix the issues she wants fixed. But, she can fix something.

I’m really sorry about this. It seems like one long rant or vent. It’s not. It’s my thoughts after a really bad day. I thought I had problems. Nah. Mine didn’t even register on any scale.

The picture. Dog walk. She found this place. I just did what I always do. No lesson to share except keep your eyes open.

Peace.

And, the fine folks at WordPress removed the spell check function. Yeah. We are all perfect writers.

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All Alone.
All Alone.

I always have to smile when somebody looks at my dystopian pictures and says, “Oh, urban blight” in about the same breath that they say how much they love New Orleans. Or, maybe a breath or two later.

Hmmm…

I have to wonder what exactly they think about New Orleans. How much they’ve seen. What they know. We have an area that was called “The Silver by the River” by the media in the months after Hurricane Katrina made landfall and the levees failed. These were neighborhoods that did not flood and for the most part have really never shown much blight. For the most part, the nickname “The City That Care Forgot,” still holds true. It did 100  years ago. It did ten years ago. It does today. Probably, 80% of the city has some level of so-called urban blight in it. That’s the same percentage that flooded after the storm.

I’m pretty certain that by square miles, more of the city is blighted, broken and abandoned than is in good shape. That’s my city. A mess.

Here’s a look at a few scenes in the 9th Ward.

Will these places come back to pre-storm levels? Who knows? I’m willing to bet that some of these places were about in the same condition they were ten years ago as they are today. I suppose if you look at it that way, they have come back to pre-Katrina levels.

Ouch.

Not Even Begun
Not Even Begun
Not quite finished now, or ever.
Not quite finished now, or ever.