December 09, 2006

The pit of despair

I still am promising that entry about the Water Saga—which continued yesterday!—but first I want to write about today. After yesterday's full court press to the finish (narrowly beating the sun by about fifteen minutes), we got put on a different site today. I've taken to referring to it as the Pit of Despair.

The missing siding is actually the fault of some overzealous gutters yesterday, whose school will not be named here, but that's not why it's the pit of despair. It's a pit because half the studs are supported by the ceiling, there are holes in the floor, a lot of clapboards were already missing anyway, there's significant termite damage (and termites present—I saw one), and big portions of the floor are... soft.

It's depressing to work in, because it seems inevitable that, however it may have looked when scouted, it will in fact have to be knocked down. But having started, we have to finish the job. And even if it is finished and they don't knock it down, they will essentially have to build a new house in its place. There are no baseboards or trim, no doors (not even the front doors), and they'll need to replace most of the structural frame and support studs.

And yet, some houses are worse! This one's in the upper ninth ward, which still has an awful lot of houses untouched since they were first opened a year ago. Businesses have signs out front stating that they intend to come back, or that they are back but elsewhere in NOLA, or just giving a number to call. Some houses have a visible 15° lean to them. But the upper ninth only got about six to eight feet of flooding (the PoD has water marks about three feet up the inside wall), and the rebuilding is actually going along more than in places like the lower ninth (which I intend to visit tomorrow and hope to post pictures then...).

Gotta go—the vans are headed back to the SA. God, that's annoying.

Posted by blahedo at 6:29pm on 9 Dec 2006
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