Tuesday, May 20, 2008

May 18 Kinder, LA

Sunday, May 18, we left Nacogdoches and drove about 170 miles to Kinder, LA where there is nice casino and RV Park. http://www.coushattacasinoresort.com/ I was in Kinder about 10 years ago, and there has been so much growth in the area due to the casino. The RV Resort adjacent to the Casino is very nice, as it was 10 years ago.

Tuesday, we decided to visit the coastal area of Louisiana. We drove though Lake Charles and on down to Creole, Cameron, and Holly Beach. These are 3 small towns that were wiped off the map by Hurricane Rita on September 24, 2005. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/9389157/ There are lots of websites on Rita, but most describe the situation in Texas, especially Houston. It seems like these little communities were forgotten, even though they took the direct hit. The devestation is still very visable. Driving along the streets and highways, you could see more foundations of homes blown away than you actual homes. There is quite a bit of new construction going on, including some new homes.

We stopped in Cameron at a truck on the side of the road to buy fresh shrimp and were visiting with the ladies there. We saw a picture of the remains of the home of one of them---just the stilts that the home was sitting on. They shared with us some of the experiences that they faced during those days.

The ladies told us that there are plans for a new casino to be built with hotels, etc. That will really be a boost the local economy.

Driving though the area we found few, if any, of the things that we would expect. We finally found a gas station--we were just about on empty! The price was very high, so we only got a little to get back to Lake Charles. It was the only one we saw in the entire area. There was one very small resturant in Cameron, but it was early and we were not ready to eat. Big mistake! An hour and a half later, we finally found a convenience store to get an ice cream bar to get us by for a while. That convenience store was the closest thing to a grocery store that we saw in the area.

There were some beautiful areas of the drive, but seeing the destruction remaining after 3 years is something that I won't forget. I can only imagine what it was like on September 24, 2005 and the weeks following.

We got back to the RV Park and I put most of the shrimp in the freezer--and saved some out to put on the grill for dinner--YUMMY!!

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