I have been back from Gulfport, Mississippi for a couple of days now. The week spent in Gulfport was very challenging but I think that we were able to accomplish much while there. We worked on a house owned by Dona and Morris Davis. Previous groups had restored the back half of their house and we worked on the front half. Most of the work involved tearing out drywall, flooring, and ceiling. We also took out a vanity and a toilet in the bathroom. We were trying to prepare the house for the electricians to re-wire the house as well as for insulation to be put in the ceilings and outer walls. Once that is done then the drywall would be replaced and the flooring and ceilings would be done. We did get to frame two closets and install hurricane straps to the rafters and floor to help combat uplift from any future hurricanes. The humidity was extremely high during our stay and the temperatures were in the 80’s for most of the week. I didn’t know if I could do such manual labor for eight hours in such conditions but I did. I guess you never quite know what you are capable of until you try.
We went into New Orleans to the French Quarter on Thursday evening and had a lot of fun although the drive by the 9th ward and the abandoned neighborhoods we saw on leaving cast a pall on the festivities. Gulfport and New Orleans suffered unbelievable damage from Hurricane Katrina. You really have to see it with your own eyes to understand the enormity of the destruction. Even though I am glad to be home I am thinking of going down again this April to do some more work. Those areas will be in need of a lot of help for many years to come and I hope to do my share.