Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Katrina . . a Reflection

No need to remind folks living in Pass Christian, MS that a new hurricane season is about to begin. Perhaps it would be just as appropriate to think of Katrina as an on going, life long event. To one degree or another lives have forever been changed and recovery will include a realization that things will never be the same. It's easier said than done to think of this as a new beginning and starting over in a different direction. It may sound good but without sufficient resources it is nearly impossible. If starting from ground zero means making something good come from Katrina it becomes 'hope for tomorrow.' A need that we all have.

My small effort to help in the recovery process taught me many things. One being that, without exception, efforts of ordinary people to help, made a difference. . . a big difference. Perhaps it was a natural bond that occurred when people of unconditional faith joined with those with an un-common need. A rare combination that was destined to produce life long friendships and mutual personal gain.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Keith And Dianne . . . More

"THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR EVERYTHING!!!You helped us rebuild our home and restore our wounded spirits. It gives us strength to push forward knowing the kind spirits of this world are looking out for so many in this battered community."

Dianne . . . Thanks for saying it so beautifully!


I knew it was just a matter of time before someone got Ken out fishing. It's about time . . . He's been working too hard!

Ken, How about a progress report from Pass Christian?

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

She's Beautiful!

. . . but doesn't run!

This 1980 Rolls Royce survived the trip from Mississippi, and now rests comfortably in the front parking lot of my favorite mechanic's shop, here in Michigan. He still has hopes of getting it running but certainly has not had much support from his fellow mechanics. "Wouldn't touch it . . . it's a bastard to work on . . . everything is backwards . . . good luck" . . . are just some of the comments he gets.

I'm searching the internet for answers . . . I may put it up for sale "As is." What do you think?

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Hurricane Season

The "Flood" behind our cottage.
Katrina pushed this boat three miles inland.

It's been predicted there is an 81 per cent chance that at least one major hurricane would make U.S. landfall in 2006. Even before leaving Pass Christian, MS last month, people were anxiously looking toward the next season which officially begins June 1. There are still many blue tarped roofs not to mention thousands still living in temporary FEMA trailers. These people fully understand how vulnerable they are and how quickly life can change.

This past week I was joined by several family members to replace the roof of the carport at our family cottage on Glen Lake, (The Most Beautiful Place in the World . . . According to daughter Debra. Read her description: http://www.wierenga.com/galleries/glenlake/DebMstBeau.html and her other poetry at: www.debrawierenga.com) O.K. so that was a commercial!

We had a violent storm. It scattered deck furniture and waves surged 10 feet on the beach. Gary and Ben rushed the season a bit and had to retrieve their boat, anchored some 50 yards off shore. No big deal in the summer but with water temperature hovering around 45 degrees it became a major challenge to get it into a neighbors lift station before suffering hypothermia.

Ten foot surge with 5 foot waves, you say? What about a three mile surge with 30 foot waves? O.K. no comparison.

Those of us that live outside the hurricane zone can only imagine what it must be like to have lost everything and now being forced to think about the next disaster. How quickly we become complacent and fail to see the lasting suffering so many victims of hurricane quatrain still endure.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Another Blown Myth!

Somewhere I picked up the notion that ducks mated for life. This pair seemed to return every year. Another male would always challenge, there would be a scuffle and then the mom, I assumed, would find a spot to raise her duckling, although I never saw the family. And all would live happily until the next spring when they would return and start a new family. It made me feel good.

Then I discovered their average life span is only a year, so mating for life is partially true, but those that survive longer take whatever spouse that comes along. That doesn't account for the challenge and this year I did notice that after the initial encounter the two males did seem to get along better. Whatever their plan, it seems to work!