And so it begins…

2 May

Sunday – May 2, 2010 – Midday:

I wandered down to the beach (it’s a thousand feet away, give or take…) to see what horror has befallen us.

Ecological Nightmares? No. Reality.

The oil hasn’t arrived on Harrison County beaches yet, at least not in my line of sight. There are numerous pumps and pieces of pipe chained to whatever structure the workers can find, but no booms, no sandbags, nada.

I stood there in the pouring rain (did I forget to mention that it’s raining intermittently?) watching people playing in the water, for probably the last time in quite a while. At least the rain disguised the tears in my eyes.

And then, it sank.

This could be the disaster that finally puts the nail in the coffin for Coastal Mississippi. We operate on tourism, as feeble as that has become. The economy hemorrhaging on itself was bad enough… now this.

I’m told that the County will shut down all the beaches sometime today, as the oil draws closer to us, carried on the tide.

Tomorrow, we’ll probably start seeing the oily film that will become waves of crude over the next week.

I think REM had it right:

“It’s the end of the world as we know it…”

In the next week, the Southern “Seaboard” will be changed, transformed into a huge toxic spill that stretches from Texas to Florida.

And for months. maybe even years, we’ll be hip deep in crude oil. Ah… if only I were Jed Clampett, because at least then I could find a song to sing on the porch about this.

No more shrimping, no more fishing, no more watching the tourists try to kill each other with rented jet-ski’s and water-bikes. Worse than that, no more pristine wetlands and estuaries still trying to recover from all the hurricane  damage.

My heart breaks for Louisiana. LA is the guardian for some of the most fertile and vibrant estuaries and waterways in America. With a shoreline that stretches farther than one could possibly imagine, the damage to the wildlife there, both finned and fowl, will be immense… strike that… horrific.

Time will tell what is to befall us. Until then, we’re all just looking out to sea, holding our breath…

Stay tuned.


2 Responses to “And so it begins…”

  1. clark May 2, 2010 at 2:42 pm #

    Being in a coastal area myself, I can well imagine the feeling of…not really sure what words to use.

    Support (of a very abstract sort) and wishes for the best (under your conditions) is what we up on the southern New England coast would send. Insufficient as it may be, it is done with that everday, background sense of dread about the course of events in the future.
    I am sure more eloquent writers can express this better, but know that there are others who share (some) of what you are feeling.

    As little as it may seem to, take heart that you have the work that you have done and are doing to serve as a bulwark against despair.
    There is a saying to the effect that lighting a single candle is totally better than cursing the darkness.
    I would submit that you have lit candles…

  2. becky May 4, 2010 at 1:59 pm #

    Y’all were the first ones I thought off when it went boom. I’m crying up here, too. Stay in touch.

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