Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Some are heading home already.

Another Uptowner, Jim Bartkus, a professor of economics at Southeastern Louisiana University, managed to get into town Tuesday by hitching a ride with an out-of-town newspaper reporter. Bartkus said National Guardsmen verified the identity of the reporter, who was driving, but ignored him.

"I saw a lot of other people looking at their houses," said Bartkus, who has been staying in a dorm room at the Hammond college. "I just wanted to get my personal stuff -- my photo albums, artwork, my journal -- the irreplaceable things."

He said he also collected his fish, which were alive. His home near the intersection of Marengo and Loyola streets was relatively unscathed, although water got into the house, he said.

While there, he met a neighbor who had ridden out the storm and stayed for the duration. The neighbor, who had recently received a delivery of supplies, offered him several cold beers, Bartkus said.

Guardsmen stopped by while Bartkus was inside his house, but they didn't pressure him to leave, he said.

Times Picayune

The Picayune ought to get a few Pulitzers for their coverage of the storm and the aftermath. Their reporters are doing a great job covering both the big story and personal interest stuff like this.

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