October 25th, 2005

new orleans, fleur

Lives Interrupted

I have been working for the last week in an almost empty office building. The people who used to be here are now across four states in other buildings the company already owned or quickly rented when everyone realized it was going to be a long time before New Orleans would be in working order again.

Walking through the floors is akin to dreams I have had when I was suddenly the only one around and I had no clue where or why the other people had disappeared. Everything looks normal but it certainly does not feel normal.

All the calendars are still on August 2005 in the offices and cubes. All the desks have papers and notes ready to go for the next expected business day and are decorated with pictures of family and friends, funny signs and other usual office clutter. For some of the people, the stuff still on display in their cubes is the only personal memorabilia they now have because all the pictures and cherished items in their homes have been destroyed.

I stare out the windows on the upper floors and see lots of buildings being repaired and that gives me hope. But when I turn back to see the empty desks on floor after floor it makes me sad to know that so many lives have been interrupted.