We Made It

Hi. My name is Sooz. I live in the Lower Garden District in New Orleans, Louisiana…

Oh my gods. Do you know how LONG I have been waiting to write that?! Years. YEARS. More so this past year, when I just kept waiting for it to be true. Let me say it again, because it feels good:

Hi. My name is Sooz. I live in the Lower Garden District, in New Orleans, Louisiana. I am one block from Magazine Street. Four from St. Charles Avenue. I commute to work by streetcar, to the CBD where I have this amazing (and totally nonstop!) job in the marine transport biz. At nights, I sit on my screened-in porch and stare at the lights of the Crescent City Connection bridge, while listening to spooky bugs and breathing the fumes of a million different flowers growing all at once. I can hear boats TOOOOOTING from home. And church bells. I’m starting to recognize faces on the street, and vice versa. And and and.

I live in New Orleans. Happily. And successfully.

And it still doesn’t seem real.

Jeebus H., what a year. J and I moved into our place here in the LGD about 2 months ago. Still unpacking, room by room. Down to about 1/2 a room of boxes and detritus now. Getting there. It’s been like Christmas, going through all the stuff that had been in one storage unit or another for almost a year. Not always easy, lot of sentiment wrapped up in possessions important to us. But good.

There is not a chance in heck that I will ever be able to go back and recap a play-by-play of stuff that’s happened since…what? Mardi Gras? Yeah, I was going to do a huge Mardi Gras writeup but never could. Commuting across Lake Ponchartrain after work ate up my nights after very busy days.

So I’ll just say. We followed my crazy a year ago in March. Lived in the shittiest extended stay hotel you could ever imagine, in Metairie, for about 3 months. Had our hearts broken when we failed and had to go back to Colorado. Lived with the fam and worked retail jobs to get by. Had our hearts broken again when we had to say goodbye to our CO tribe. AGAIN. Hauled ALL of us out here, fam and all, at the tail-end of October, stayed in another slightly less crappy extended stay hotel for about a week, in Metairie. (I have a pretty strong hangup about Metairie now. In that respect, anyway.) Moved the fam to Mandeville. Lived there for about 4 months (J and I – Infamaus and Cootie are still there!), in which time we both acquired real damn jobs. And almost accidentally stumbled across the ad for the place in which we are now nestled. In New Orleans. Moved in, and, Welcome to New Orleans, had to camp out our very first weekend because the Sewerage and Water Board got the water-turn-on date wrong. Washed our hair over the sink for work that first Monday. You know, the usual. And have now been slowly but surely settling in.

It is a treat to me, just to walk to the corner store. Or to ride the streetcar home from work. Everything is fascinating yet familiar. And totally unreal, after everything we had to go through to be in THIS. Very. Spot. Right. Now.

I’m going through bits and pieces of some sort of weird post traumatic thing right now. A year ago today, we were hitting the end of our means but hanging in there, and trying trying trying and getting very nervous about the state of things. The other day, we came across the cardboard box that had the remnants of Hotel Life in it…it’s still sitting there. I can’t look in it. The simplest things like the books I was reading at that time have gone into the Goodwill box. I can never read them again. Good thing they weren’t important pieces of literature. It’s kind of wild. And there’s financial fear after being so unemployed and/or broke for so long. Or this irrational It’s Going to All Disappear Tomorrow angst. But it’s minimal and doesn’t last long. But yeah, you’d have to pay me big bucks to drive down the I-10 Service Road past those damn hotels. I can’t even tolerate Clearview. Too many last-year memories.

I am digressing in the hugest way. I’ve missed this blog SO MUCH! We finally got internet a couple of days ago and I have the time and space to write again. So please forgive me if my return entry is less than poetic or a little spazzy. I’m just so damn excited to be back, in many many ways.

My name is Sooz. I live in New Orleans.

We made it home.

Featured Image: My Front Door

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11 Comments Add yours

  1. Magdalene says:

    Yay for blogging again!!!!!!

    1. Yay indeed – and I got lax again! Making some changes in my daily work routine to allow myself more energy to get back into my groove. Here we go!

  2. Michelle says:

    Yay! I’ve missed these!

    1. Missed these too…STILL! Time to get back on the writerly-horse.

  3. *THERE* you are!
    The best part of this whole tale, for me, is watching you work so hard for and subsequently realize your dreams as they become a reality. It must be so surreal when that happens!
    Day by day I’ve seen this transformation and your life has gone from the little CO cocoon that could no longer hold you, to a fully blossomed and great big beautiful creole butterfly. It’s been incredible to see on this end, and that is but a slivered glimpse of the experience on your end.
    You are a brilliant inspiration for those folks out there who are still building their dreams. ;D

    XOXO
    Scarlett

    1. AND here I am again! Making some changes in my crazy schedule so I can do this Mo Bettah. And now I’m thinking of YOU launching on your new adventures. MWAH!

  4. bayoucreole says:

    You are a brilliant inspiration for those folks out there who are still building their dreams .
    I agree!
    I am so happy for you! I got chills reading your blog. I love that part of the city. My husband and I have said that, if we ever move, it would be in the lower garden district. A block from Magazine? I’m in the Krewe of Nyx and we roll down Magazine. When I find out what float I”m on and stuff, I’m gonna let you know. That way, I can pelt you with all sorts of goodies along with the coveted Nyx Purse.
    YAY! Sooz lives in NOLA!!!!!!!

    1. Miss Bayoucreole! Thank you so much. So sorry for the late replies. Got tangled in a really energy-draining way of going about things (workwise) and lost steam. No more! 😀 Am so happy to be here, every day. Gotta share it more. I think it would be awesome if you ever moved over here and we were neighbors. ;D SO excited for your Nyx status too! It’s my dream to be in something like that someday. In the meantime, I will SO TOTALLY be on da street with bells on and a huge ol’ Follow Your Crazy sign cheering my face off!

  5. Judy Waldrip says:

    Sooz, so happy to read your blog again, and SO happy that YOU are SO happy! Cootie

  6. infamaus says:

    Sooz. Mission Accomplished. Still all seems a bit unreal to me, too, but that’s probly residual combat fatigue. I believe we’re all where we’re supposed to be.

  7. infamaus says:

    Sooz. Oh, I forgot to tellya. Instead of Bead Dogs it’s now Pelicans. Little statues all over Slidell. Need to spot a few of those.

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