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|Ouachita left impression on evacuees|
We were evacuees to your area in late August/early September 2008. We had never been to your area, and never evacuated for a hurricane before.
We were treated very warmly by those folks we were in contact with and several went out of their way to see to our needs.
We were housed at the West Monroe Convention Center for five days, and to get there, a nice lady let us follow her to the Convention Center. She said she just wanted to bless us when we asked her if we owed her anything. A male friend followed behind us on his motorcycle.
Then, when we needed to wash some clothes, we found a washateria a few blocks south of the Convention Center and discovered they didn't sell washing powder. I was asking where I could find a store to buy some, when a man stepped forward and offered us some of his washing powder.
As the clothes were washing then drying, I wandered around the small shopping center. I visited a pet store and a gift shop and both places said I could look around. Very nice to a stranger!
When we first arrived, a Red Cross lady found a place where we could get our little dog boarded, and that was behind the Monroe Civic Center, in a large barn. Several people staying at the convention center had their cats and dogs boarded there. The PAWS animal organization were very nice people to deal with. We had to go every day and feed our dogs and change the newspapers in his kennel, and walk him.
We were directed to Fred's Pharmacy where we were able to buy some items we left home without. Those folks were very nice in there also.
We didn't drive around your city for fear I would get lost. Since then we've met some people who live there and we corresponded with one Red Cross lady fora while. If we ever have another mandatory evacuation, our local Council on Aging will be evacuating us to the Monroe Civic Center. Then, I won't be driving our car. A blessing for me, since I don't drive at night.
It sure is nice up there. Nice rolling hills.
P.S. I am a ham radio operator but there weren't and plans for a ham radio station at the Convention Center. The West Monroe police had laptops there and kept us informed about the roads to Houma. There were all still closed until the end of the week, when a fire marshall cam and said all shelters were to be closed that day and everybody had to leave. All roads into Houma were open then.
Mr. and Mrs. Travis McKee