What a mess

Well, hello all. We went to the warehouse today. I had some glimmer of hope that somehow the flood waters had been held back by our incredibly tight metal doors. What an idiot. It was a mess.

Here’s Betsy, who has just precariously made her way across the rubble. The whole building looks like this. Aside from a metal ladder and a few other things, there’s nothing to salvage. We just had to laugh. What else can you do? As I am showing you photos, I am going to talk about some very serious things and I want you all to listen up.

Here’s Betsy’s office. Somebody joked that she ought to keep a cleaner work space. She managed to save the photo of Kirstin that had been on her desk and was now at the bottom of a pile of rubble. It was the only thing she really cared about, and somehow the photo made it through.

First serious point. Nashville is a disaster area. There are people with no food. This is Katrina in Tennessee.

Here is our break room. Note refrigerator on side and furniture that floated all the way from the back of the room to the front. I asked my new favorite boyfriend, the remediation expert Matt, if we could save the microwave. He’s used to dealing with people who don’t have a sense of humor. It was a joke, Matt.  

Second serious point. People want to donate right now, but they will lose interest in a week or two. Please don’t lose interest. Please don’t, I beg of you.

There were funny things. Betsy and I can find the humor in almost anything. Here, in her ravaged office, was a band-aid from her first aid kit stuck to the wall. Is this a big enough band-aid to stick on CRC? We were at our temporary warehouse today and, when we actually thought there would be something to salvage, Betsy took a roll of paper towels from the donations to dry off things at the CRC warehouse. I told her we should save that for flood victims. “Catherine,” she said. “We are flood victims.” Right

O.K., we could not contain ourselves here. These are the lawn chairs we sit in by the open dock door to conduct strategic planning sessions. They were the only things left sitting almost exactly where we left them. How does that happen?

Important point three: If you are reading this you are interested. Please turn that interest into action. If you know of companies that have basic necessities, get them to donate.  If you can organize a drive for shampoo, deodorant, diapers, underwear, laundry detergent, cleaning supplies – anything basic – DO IT.

As Betsy and I find the humor in our plight, please think bigger than us.  

Important point four. If you have the time and the means, donate. CRC is the official arm of the Mayor’s Office for pushing out donations to those who need them most. We are working with Hands On Nashville to get them distributed.  Bring your donations to A+ Storage, 911 Division Street, from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday-Saturday. Contact information is on our website.

So here’s a personal story – as if this were not personal enough already – to end for tonight. We got a frantic call from a Hands on Nashville staffer at the Bordeaux center today. He needed EVERYTHING. We had just gotten our wholesale shipment in but didn’t have much else, it being the first day and all. We told him to come on and we’d get him what we could. An hour later, before he arrived, Jae Nash from  WVOL 1470 radio station brought in everything he needed. The “stuff” came in. It went right back out. And that’s the point, of course.

Many, many people will be working for weeks and months to come to help our most fragile citizens. Do not forget us. Please, I beg of you, do not forget us.

What a mess

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