God Rest Ye, Merry Gentlemen - Jars of Clay - listen now

Tuesday, May 9, 2006

Do You Know What It Means, To Miss New Orleans?

I do. I'm from that part of the world. Mississippi born and raised for the most part, so New Orleans has always been a big part of my life. I watched Mississippi and New Orleans suffering and I felt so helpless - the news video was a like a knife in my side.
"New Orleans could wreck your liver and poison your blood. It could destroy you financially. It could shun you or embrace you, teach you tricks of the heart you thought Tennessee Williams was just kidding about. And in August it could break your spirit. -- Julie Green
Isn't it funny how physical places can hold on to your heart so strong? I've often wondered if that's a Southern thing, or does everyone suffer from it? I'm not sure everyone understands how attached you can get to a "place." I do know this, when you're from the South - there's more suffering in your DNA than you'll ever live through. It seeps right into your soul. You just can't avoid inheriting the melancholy. I guess that's something only southerners can understand.
In truth, as I would come to understand, Mississippi may have been the only state in the Union (or certainly one of a half dozen in the South) which had produced a genuine set of exiles, almost in the European sense: alienated from home yet forever drawn back to it, seeking some form of personal liberty elsewhere yet obsessed with the texture and complexity of the place from which they had departed as few Americans from other states could ever be. -- Willie Morris
So what brought this unburdening on? A couple of posts by Will Collier over at Vodkapundit. He just went to New Orleans for Jazz Fest and has made two posts about what he saw, including pictures. I recognized where almost every photo was taken. And it was nice to hear the old sing-song names of streets and places: Metairie, Camellia, Carondelet, Elysian Fields, The Marigny, The Vieux Carré.
The happiness of the South was very formidable. It was an almost invincible happiness...Everyone was in fact happy. The women were beautiful and flirtatious. The men were handsome, and successful and charming...They had everything the North had and more. They had a history. -- Walker Percy
Cafe du Monde is still there and so is Pat O'Briens - where I had my first drink (well, first drink as a legal adult.) But so much is missing too and won't ever come back. So please forgive this gooey post. I'm trying to remember as much as I can before I go back and start making new memories.

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