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Hurricane Refugees

We made it out of New Orleans with our three cats and not much else. We’re now safely ensconced with the in-laws in Bloomington, Indiana.

We got up at 3AM on Sunday morning, packed a few things, choked down some hash browns, checked the weather reports, and hit the road by 5AM. Five hours later we got a hotel room in Winona, Mississippi. We were thinking maybe the storm wouldn’t hit New Orleans too bad, maybe we’d be able to return quickly.

Obviously, that’s not the case.

We spent the night in Winona, glued to CNN. When we woke up Monday morning and saw Katrina ripping the roof off the Superdome, we realized a quick return was unlikely, and decided to continue northward. We spent last night in Bloomington. Today we’re being inundated by Katrina rain here, too. There may even be flash floods in parts of Indiana.

It looked for a while like New Orleans had escaped the doomsday scenario, but then the levee broke on the 17th Street Canal. Our neighborhood is most certainly flooded now. We just don’t know how bad. The mayor says 80% of the city is under water. I’m worried about what’s become of our friend and neighbor Michael Homan. You can read what he posted to his blog before the power went out; it’s scary.

Calls to the 504 area code are problematic, so if you call our cell phone, you might not reach us. If you need to give a call, try 812-336-4656.

Published inBloomingtonKatrinaTravel


  1. Glad to hear you’re as well as can be. Hope things aren’t too bad for you when you finally get back down there. As you must be aware, I have been thinking about you a great deal these past few days. Hope my linktrawling is of benefit and use to you and friends.

  2. I’m so sad to think of what you and all of my other NOLA friends will return to. I don’t have much to offer, but if you need anything you think I might have in the coming months, please let me know.

  3. JimmyR JimmyR

    Glad you guys are ok…I was pleased to see the post that you were heading out. Like others, I don’t know what kind of things you fine people might need, but let me know…and come see Jennifer, Ned, Shari, and me down at the Clear Creek!

  4. a a

    Releived to hear you and the kittys are safe in B-town.
    Please let us know if there is anything you need now or when you return.

  5. pj pj

    If yr a friend of Bart’s, you should know me and my family are okay too. I’ve talked to several Xavier employees who are good.

    I’m in Indiana til the power comes on.

  6. MF MF

    Hi guys! Glad you’re okay! Remember that I’m in cheapclothesandshoesland. Especially if some of XY’s stuff needs replacement, I can send you anything you need.

  7. MF MF

    I just read a Times-Picayune article that looters have beseiged the Children’s Hospital and are trying to break in. That’s crazy! How could people do that? It sounds like Night of the Living Dead or something!

  8. So glad you’re ok and safe and sound. We made it up to iowa. Watching in horror.. but we will return.. and we will rebuild..

    Good to see a familiar ‘face’ out there. Biggfish from FlickR


  9. Hey, I tried to call but no one was there. If it looks like you might not be able to go back for a long while you should come out to Baltimore and stay with us.

  10. General Sin General Sin

    To hell with Baltimore, you guys need to come to Austin. Better yet, while your stuff dries out you should take a six week spin couch-surfing around the U.S. Thank heavens the debacle in Babylon is keepin’ gas prices down…

  11. Being a big fan of ROX, you two were of the first I thought about in hearing of the total evac.I don’t know anyone personally who lives in NOLA. I am very happy you two are safe.

  12. Jeff Elbo Jeff Elbo

    hey b…as soon as me and a friend of mine heard about new orleans, we immediately thought about you guys…

    …we’re glad you’re ok

    i’m not up-to-the-minute right now about the storm, but we wish you the best..

  13. A nice surprise to see you guys at the HT today. Good thing the downstairs restroom was being cleaned, or I probably would have missed you! Carrie was glad to hear the kitties made it with you OK.

  14. David Bryan David Bryan

    B, glad you and K-Pax are OK. Have you heard from any of the other New Orleans gang? Send me an email if you can. I’m in Dallas, trying to sow the seeds of insurrection against the Bush crime family in their own backyard. I’ll let you know when I harvest a bumper crop.

  15. David Bryan David Bryan

    Well, I just read your blog more carefully and caught the part about Mike. Why did he stay? That sucks!

    My uncle stayed in town in the CBD. This is the uncle that was Edwin Edwards’ colonel over the state police. If anyone should have known better . . . what a dumbass! He owns two homes on the northshore, too. I took some satisfaction in telling my dad that I hoped he was huddled up in the superdome right now with the rest of the refugees.

  16. Evelyn Goss Evelyn Goss

    Hey B and Xy,
    It’s been really hard to get in touch with anybody in NOLA the past week and so it’s nice to see that you two are safe and able to communicate. I drop in on the website occasionally and feel a bit like a peeping tom since I don’t keep in touch. But I did think about you this week and I’m very relieved that you and your kitties are OK.
    As for me, I’ve been living in Austin for two years and work at a community college as a lab technician. That’s about it!

    Take care,

  17. Michael Homan Michael Homan

    Bart and Xy, I’m OK and in Omaha. You can reach me in a few days at mmhoman@yahoo. com. I was in a small boat last Friday and went up and down Canal Street. I didn’t see your house specifically, but I saw your neighborhood. Basically, your upstairs did not flood, but your downstairs of course is in about 4-6 feet of some pretty damn toxic water.

  18. Bart & XY, I have been worrying about you and am glad to know you and the kits are safe. I am so sorry Mother Nature trashed your city (and at least part of your house based on Michael’s posting). Enjoy the visit to IN. Wish I could pop back for a visit and see you (been 3 yrs since I’ve been to Indy/B-ton).

  19. […] Tuesday, August 30th: I was sleeping in. Xy told me their was news of a levee breach. I thought they were still talking about the industrial canal, but when I got up I learned it was the outfall canals and that most of the city was flooding. I knew then that our neighborhood was flooded, but still clung to the insane hope that our house was dry. Katrina rain fell in Bloomington, and there were a few flash floods in Indiana. It begins to sink in that we are hurricane refugees. […]

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