Monday, February 27, 2006

Lundi Gras

All weekend long, I was sitting around my apartment in Nashville thinking about how I would like to be back home in Louisiana for Mardi Gras this year. It's been two years since my last Mardi Gras and I didn't miss it too much last year since Roxi came to visit me for the week. But this year is different. I miss it because of the year that Louisiana has had and the recovery that it helps provide. Despite all that happened in New Orleans with Hurricane Katrina and in the Lafayette area with Hurricane Rita, Mardi Gras is happening as it should.

I've read some stories about people thinking that it is "too soon" and inappropriate because so little recovery has taken place in the hardest hit areas, but I think that is exactly the reason it should go on. Like it or not, Louisiana's economy is dependent on tourism and the revenue generated from Mardi Gras. Sure the economy has other revenue streams, but for places like New Orleans and Lafayette, tourism is one that dominates. All people in Louisiana want is for things to go back to normal and having Mardi Gras is a necessity for such normalcy.

I can understand the frustration of refugees of New Orleans who feel resources are being wasted on a party when there is infrastructure that needs to be rebuilt. But what if there were no celebration this year? What kind of message would that send? To me that would send the message that Louisiana was defeated and New Orleans has an uncertain future. The loss of life and property was truly tragic, but what of the living and those that are ready to move forward? It is for these reasons that I am happy to see that Mardi Gras is happening, even if it is a scaled down version. I only wish that I could be there to help inject some dollars into the economy.

So to all those that celebrate this Carnival season, "Laissez les bon temps rouler!"

1 comment:

Bubba said...

I'm having a king cake for the Festival. And Katie showed me her boobs.