Archive for the 'blogging new orleans' Category

Anniversary of another flood

dripping fan

Originally uploaded by schleifnet

Today, September 11, 2008 makes one year since our last flood event in the Schleifstein household. Since today was the last day we could file suit against our old landlord to recover damages due to the flood that rained on Mandy and since we didn’t sue due mostly to lack of time, money, and a little apathy, I figure I can tell the world our story.
Imagine, if you will, the 6th anniversary of the WTC and pentagon airplane bombings (back in 2007). The country is morning its losses (NYC with the loudest voice) and the bulk of us are going through life the same way we did 6 years after OKC, the Atlanta Bombs, the first WTC bombing, Andrew, etc etc… Anyway (9/11/01 was horrible and may was always remember it as one of the national tragedies that occurred in the USA), Around 2pm it started to rain in New Orleans. Around 2:30 I got a frantic call from my very pregnant wife (8 months and on bed rest no less): “AAAAAA!!! the fan is leaking in the bedroom, water is everywhere, what do i do?!”
I asked if she was ok, she worried about the baby stuff, I asked if it was in the non-flooding room, yes, good, put buckets out to catch water (at this point I had no idea how bad it was), I’m going to come home now to take care of this…
Get time off… new Mandy call: “AAAA!!! the ceiling just fell!!! AAAA!!!”
It seems the water was to much for the drywall overhead and the ceiling (layer one) was starting to cave in.
Now I call landlord, downstairs neighbors, my parents, and run out the door at my office…
Get home… get mandy out of house with a few essentials… see water pouring from ceiling and AC in window (as it had been for months, and as the landlord had seen and been informed of)…
Mandy goes to my parents to stay for what becomes two weeks while we quickly move out of now unlivable place and into a new much much much better place with real heat and central air. Plus I move all non-damp stuff out of the now nasty old apartment while the downstairs neighbors also move out (the water entering our master bedroom spread in the floor to both downstairs bedrooms and the bathroom).
After moving the insurance company lets all of us know noone is covered even though we all had flood and renters and owners insurance (how nice we were all covered by the same company). Seems the roof had a few FEET of standing water on it due to bad repair work that eventually caused a leak the took out all kinds of stuff. The roof had been repaired numerous times and in fact we had reported leaks numerous times…plus the roof blew out a drain attached the the gutter and was gushing water into out bedroom via the window AC for a couple months (also reported and not fixed)…
Anyway, we thought about suing and even deduced that out lease would have allowed us to (stated something about allowing us to sue if damage due to agent of landlord, ie: roofer screwed up and didn’t fix it), but time became an issue and money too (we lost a kingsized bed, a number of bookshelves, books, a chest of drawers and more that had been paid for with a post-Katrina SBA loan, hello 6 grand in useless debt…the bed was mostly paid for by a gift from my parents and replaced out of pocket).
You see we just didn’t have the strength to go make our “1-call-that’s-all” or deal with the hassles that a small claims suit would bring…

wow this is really rambling…look bottom line, I wanted to get this story out as a new longwinded whine and end with the silver lining…
Yup she is our silver lining. Losing that apartment meant a better quality of life for my daughter. She is able to live in an apartment with real heat and a/c and windows that open and have screens, and all on the first floor in a relatively family friendly neighborhood near a number of nice parks and libraries and not in the city proper near rebuilding neighborhoods. She gets all this and I only have to pay for it with a long drive to work and debt out the wazoo from two floods in two apartments one of which she almost lived in.
Anyway (yet again) the above pic was taken by my beautiful wife before the ceiling started to cave in on her while the roof was starting to flood our bedroom. (Roof leak puddles are actually visible on googlemaps still).

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sorry for the long whiny depressing post, better stuff in the future…
did I mention we gustav evac’d to mandy’s aunt ally’s place in iowa (outside of Davenport), I drove back with cats and mandy and annable flew back a few days later…oh and adam in in Freeport, TX near where Ike is supposed to hit and will be evac’ing to Houston to stay with my pa-in-law and other bro-in-law soon… And my dad is officially the ‘man who predicted the flood’… and my grandpa is getting back surgery next week for a disc problem… and my mom is not back from evac yet due to being in Atlanta for grandpa… and my sister is in NYC and will be bringing her beau down for Annabel’s first birthday on October 17th (can’t wait to see all the relatives at the party)…and and and…we’re done.

Welcome back UNO Lakefront Arena, we missed you

The place where I graduated from high school and college and whose locker room I kept clean will it was used by visiting teams playing the Z’s and I zipped around in a golf cart with Z’s equipment while I was a batboy is reopening tonight. For the first time since the storm the New Orleans Lakefront Arena at University of New Orleans is going to open its doors and have an event. Sure it’s high school music on ice, but its a start.

The concerts are sure to get better. All kinds of artists played there over the years and I ran into a few of them while a batboy for the Z’s in high school. I met Soundgarden once in the hallway while working a game (they were on their way to the stage before a show) and drove Meatloaf and a clubhouse manager and his manager on a golfcart to see a game once (while he was waiting to go on stage at the arena).

Anyway, welcome back arena, we missed you and thank you for being the latest sign of the recovery of the crescent city.

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