But there was also loneliness, and a lot of it--at least for me. As someone who had no family in New Orleans, other than my husband and daughter, I oftentimes felt jealous of the huge connection that all of the locals here had with their families. They all had dinner together every Friday night, it was nothing to drop your newborn off at your mama's house for the weekend (sooo jealous) so that you could go out with your friends and have fun, etc. Through the pre-Katrina years, I made a lot of friends here--friends who I now call family. But after Katrina, they all moved away.
As I'm sure I've mentioned before, after Katrina, life in New Orleans kinda sorta sucked for awhile. In addition to accepting the unbelievable as commonplace, it was damn lonely. Don't get me wrong, the camaraderie that everyone felt here for one another was amazing. The guy standing in line with you at the grocery store became your new best friend as you shared your flood stories, as did that guy who worked on the 11th floor whom you'd never spoken to before, after four years of working at the same place, the clerk at the gas station, and any other random stranger you might sit next to in a bar. That part was one of the most uplifting things I've ever been a part of.