On the Friday after turkey day, hubby & I travelled AWAY from the malls and took a drive down Hwy. 11 towards New Orleans to check out any progress that had taken place since our last trip in September. It was a picture perfect day and the traffic was light which made it an excellent time to "go lookin" around.
click on pictures to view full-size versions
We took a slow ride down Rats Nest Road, along Lake Pontchartrain.
Almost completely obliterated by the storm, this area is finally showing signs of progress,
but what really hits you is the shoreline
It contains the remains of what once were miles of docks jutting out into the lake.
From here you can see the progress on the new twinspans
From there we drove out to far eastern Slidell, towards one of my favorite places to drive, Lake Catherine . I always loved this ride because it is so beautifully serene out there, moreso since the storm because they too were completely razed by Katrina.
This area is seeing a long awaited building boom, but there is still debris pickup going on, as evidenced by these two pictures
This home has been in progress for about a year now and it looks almost complete. Quite a difference from the old, thrown together camps that used to be along Hwy. 90.
This place went up quite quickly.
I'm sure all of the raised houses are being constructed intelligently, as this one is being built
Sites like this burned out camp are becoming more and more rare in the Lake Catherine area.
As we passed Fort Pike we noticed to chartered busses from Germantown, Maryland full of what appeared to be students. They were cleaning up the Fort and cutting grass. Many thanks to them. I'm looking forward to the Fort's reopening.
As another sign of progress, we noticed that the work on the new Rigolets bridge is progressing.
It's heartening to see more progress than stagnation, but the area has a long way to go to get back to normal, whatever that is.
I DO know that it'll be a very long time before we don't see all of the dead trees along Hwy 90 in the East (look BEHIND the beautiful oak tree)