Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Happy Third Birthday, Katrina! Part 6

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5

As we went room by room in my house, we did notice some damage. Most of the damage appeared to be water streaks coming from the ceiling and some mold spots on the floor. We concluded that although the water did not breach the house, the standing water stayed long enough to cause moisture to seep through the cracks in the floorboards. We didn’t have sub-flooring, so it was my 80 year old wooden floors, 6 inches of air and nasty, stinky flood waters. It caused spots of mold to grow on the flooring throughout the house.

We were instructed by the oh, so great and knowledgeable TV Gods that you were to clean out your refrigerators and then tape them securely before tossing them on the street for disposal.

I kept telling my mother to hell with it. Let’s just tape up the damn thing and toss it to the street. No one will know or care until it’s too late.

But, nope, my mother wanted to be a good law abiding citizen.

I told her under no circumstances could I do this. I can stomach almost anything but the stench of rotten food. Turns my stomach like nothing else can.

However, I had to put on my big girl panties and hold the trash bag while she literally swept everything that was in the fridge and freezer into the bag below.


This is gonna get graphic. Skip if you’re eating.

First of all, the stench was not as bad as I had thought it was going to be. I can only assume that after something has rotted to the degree that this rotted, that the smell eventually dissipates.

BUT…..the first time a maggot crawled across my gloved hand…I screamed like the little bitch I am and almost barfed right there amongst the ruins of my fridge.

Not that you would have been able to differentiate between it and what we cleaned out. It would have all looked the same.

I had to leave repeatedly just to get a breath of fresh air. I thought I was going to pass out.

I did learn a bunch of new things on this trip.

For instance…I learned that hamburger meat CAN liquefy. For real. And that just because it’s in a jar, doesn’t mean that it can’t grow legs and hair and practically walk out of the fridge by itself.

And that Tupperware, while sturdy and dependable, can not resist the charms of maggots and flies and liquid ooze.

After that lovely chore was done, we then taped the hell out of that fridge and my mom and I, BY OURSELVES, moved that fridge out of the kitchen and tossed it ass over tea kettle off the front porch to the street below.

I am woman, hear me roar! ROAR!!!!!!!!!!

The next step was to assess the damages to my mom’s place.

In three words…it was worse.

Despite not having a gaping hole in the roof, we lost about 75% of the shingles from the roof which allowed water to simply pour right in to the attic and then down to her ceilings in to her rooms.

The funny thing was, it all gravitated towards the light fixtures and ceiling fan openings in the ceilings. Anything that was directly below the fixtures got saturated.

This included the mattresses in both bedrooms, a flower arrangement on the dining room table (because it was right below the light, it saved her birds eye maple dining room pub table from ruin), a coffee table in the living room and part of the flooring in the kitchen.

To skip ahead to the damages, it was over $80000 worth of damage. Seven out of eleven walls had to be replaced, every ceiling had to be replaced, every room had to be repainted, the floors had to be replaced (as well as the ones in my house), contents had to be replaced, we needed a new roof, new gutters, etc, etc, etc…….

After we assessed the damages, I went and found a Ziploc bag, a fresh bottle of water from the car and managed to get Freddy into the bag with fresh water. I gathered up all of light of my life’s requests and we headed back over to K’s house for the night.

To be continued…


10 really cool people who give a rat's patootie:


I am going to catch up on my reading because this first hand discourse about Katrina is really interesting. It is great that you are using this outlet to discuss it.


I cannot imagine emptying out the fridge. Cause I already know how gross chicken can be if it's left in the extra fridge for a week when our plans kept changing and I didn't cook it. And that's just a week. And then did you have to repeat the process at your mom's house? Yuck, yuck, yuck. It's a good thing you didn't bring your daughter to be scarred by that process!

sassy stephanie

No way could I have done it. I would have totally tossed my cookies.


We've done some science experiments in our refrigerator (by accident) and I've been totally grossed out. So I can only imagine your refrigerator. GROSS! Maggots would have me screaming too.

That's a lot of water damage! Did insurance cover it?!

Captain Dumbass

Maggots, yick! (not very manly shudder)

Katie Says

I have been reading this Katrina Story and how scary! I can't even imagine going through something like that.


I can't even imagine! Your story is very interesting; I'm glad you are posting it.


You had me at maggots.


Unbelievable. I never even think about the simple things after a disaster like that (like refridgerator clean up times thousands of homes). You are a brave woman with a strong stomach.

Middle Aged Woman

Phew, finally have time to finish the tale. I once had a landlord that had some half-assed plumbing done in our upper flat. His lower flat? Was nearly destroyed, and the water POURED through his light fixtures and the ceiling fans. My floor got damp, then dried out.

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