Superdome, New Orleans ( Katrina style)

New Orleans Superdome, katrina style

After watching the Saints miraculously win the Super Bowl this past weekend, I began to think about my first trip down to New Orleans, in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. I was initially covering evacuees in Houston for People magazine, but once that assignment was over, myself and staff writer Ken Lee decided to make the dicey drive through Louisiana (mainly because ken needed his car back, after it had been stranded at New Orleans airport for the best part of a week). So we stocked the car with four or five cans of gasoline, food and a couple of empty bottles as an emergency bathroom ( you can’t stop once your crossing the swamp). I was fortunate to hook up with a unit of the 82nd Airborne as they patrolled the city, including the Superdome. It was a remarkable sight. There were signs posted outside noting that ecoli was present, which made the experts at the time certain that the building would have to be demolished! I’m happy to say that prophecy did not come true. But the experience of walking this desolate empty space, with just the sound of dripping water, was eerily reminiscant of a scene from a Ridley Scott movie. I just stood there, thinking that this was the sight of so many past great Super Bowls, and every Saints home game, and just a few days ago, the scariest place on Earth. What a remarkable recovery for a team that a short time ago was homeless, just like it’s residents.

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