i’m a creature of habit. i go where i need to go and only venture out when the plan changes. i had never been to the 9th ward – even pre-katrina, until recently when i went to an elementary school to help clean up. recently i’ve ventured out to st. bernards parish to volunteer with a mobile clinic.

the neighborhoods i’ve lived in are no different. i drive to school and/or work and from school and/or work and that is the extent of what i see. i was thrown slightly off in recent weeks because i live in the vicinity of the parade routes and a general party area. two events in the last two weeks have forced me to search out parking somewhere other than in front of my house.

today i changed that though…inspired by my mother and my biological basis of disease class, i ventured out on foot. i begin french classes in a few days and the place is within walking distance so i’ve decided to walk it. today i timed it and checked out the best lit route. i figure it is good for my sluggish lazy self to get out some and i saves a little gas.

what i saw was amazing…i’ve never realized how much i haven’t seen in my neighborhood. the houses…up close when my eyes aren’t pinned to the road. the unique style of old new orleans houses, narrow houses, sweeping front porches, wrought iron fates, spring flowers blooming. i found a neighborhood corner store/chinese food place(scary but there).

of course my heart will thank me in a while…happy to be off the couch fora moment…but i’m thankful for the chance to see new orleans up close and personal – beyond the pot holes and water lines.

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