Hurricane Katrina: A New Orleanian's perspective

I was born and raised and surfed in the Monterey Bay area. For the past 12 years, I have lived in New Orleans. I fared pretty well in that my house is dry and for the most part intact. I think this benefit is a great idea. It’s a great feeling to know that surfers all over are showing their concern and support for such a great cause. I’ve been able to get back to N.O. since the Hurricane and it’s devastating. The amount of destruction is shocking and looks similar to something from a postapocalyptic movie and the thoughts and feelings I had while there made me feel like I was Mad Max. Planning the trip into town involved plans for gasoline, guns and ammo, food, security from unknown threats, water. Things I never thought I’d have to concern myself with. Currently, I’m living 6 hours away in Houston, Texas. We are now considering evacuating due to Hurricane Rita. Out of the frying pan, into the fire. I do continue to surf. There was a place in Louisiana called Fourchon that was very muddy, murky, bull-sharky, and I occasionally surf the Florida panhandle. I was actually concerned about my old Haut surfboards, wondering if I’d find them strewn about the neighborhood. I even have one of my Dad’s old Hauts from the early 70’s. I consider myself lucky. 4 of my employees have houses underwater! I only have 6 employees total. That should give you an idea of how many were affected and to what extent. My inlaws have lost 2 houses as well as everything in them. Gone! I will post pictures soon. not much time inbetween dealing with my 3 kids anxiety and their new school (my 5 year old started crying yesterday as they were closing his Texas school due to Hurricane Rita), FEMA, Insurance, Red Cross, Insurance, and a few more gray hairs. I know this is not a surfing-related thread, but I am a surfer whose first half-finished home-depot EPS fish sits awaiting my return to The Big Easy (can you believe I had to glue 4 sheets of 3/4 inch eps together, it’s the thickest you can get down here). I’ll post photos soon if anyone’s interested. Good luck to all in Hawaii and Texas and anyone else who has to worry about these whirling monsters called hurricanes.

With all you are going through, now is probably not the best time to be giving you board building suggestions, but hopefully sometime sooner than later things will come right and you’ll be back thinking about shaping your next board. When I lived in New Orleans, I used to get eps blocks direct from a eps manufacturer across the lake in Hammond. I can’t remember the name, but it was in the little industrial park by the Hammond airport. They would blow any density and block size that you wanted.

I still have a number of friends down there all struggling with the same devastation as you are. Words can’t really describe how I feel about the scenes from my old stomping grounds. I, and I hope alot of others here, am contributing what I can to the relief funds, but I would like to personally wish you good luck with your recovery efforts.



Thought and prayers are with you. Hang in there. Be safe. Do post pictures of the boards. Mike

Thanks alot for the line on the EPS in Hammond. I will definitely look them up when I return to N.O.