First time blogging at active/rain. I have been a Realtor for 12 years. 4 years in Oregon, remaining years in Louisiana. I lived in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina, and yes it was and still is as devastating as it was reported to be. It effected all people, regardless of incomes and types of homes. My home was one of the many thousands flooded. The landscape where I practiced real estate changed overnight. Until you have worn rubber gloves, boots and a mask to show property...it's difficult to describe the conditions Realtors faced in showing homes.
I made the heart rendering decision to relocate to Baton Rouge, La. the first of this year. Baton Rouge is more inland, and perceived to be safe. After all, it isn't a bowl surrounded by faulty levees. I Placed my license in a new office, surrounded by new faces..and not to mention, learning a new market. When Gustav came knocking at the doors, many of my New Orleans friends sought shelter with me as they evacuated. As we all held our breath for New Orleans, my new city was astonished at the aftermath Gustav left in it's wake. No flooding, however the entire city lost power. Not to mention the fallen trees, many which landed on homes. Anyone who is familiar with Louisiana this time of year, knows the heat and humidity can be volatile. Some are still without electricity to this day. Standing in lines for ice hours at a time, became the norm for many days after Gustav.
Why do I remain in a place near coastal disturbances one may ask? It's Louisiana, the entire state is saturated in culture. The people are warm, friendly, hugs and kisses on the cheeks are a daily event. Yes, indeed resilient people reside here. Louisiana can be traced back in history as enduring extreme hardships...and yet it, we prevail.
My West Coast experience certainly propelled my career in the South. The technology, work ethic and being efficient are all key notes to my thriving business. In time I learned to blend the west coast mentality with a Louisiana attitude. Eating heartily, drinking merrily, laughing often and dancing plenty. Taking the time to enjoy Mardi Gras parades, in exuberance catching plastic beads to adorn my neck. This is a place that bond and unite in hard times as well as good times. The laid back ease, and don't be too uptight outlook are attributes of many here. We take the time to live fully. Today is a good day, tomorrow may be a bit tough...so lets hug, eat, drink and dance. During the hardships...arm in arm, we know the good days are just right after the tomorrows. It's not a coincidence the saying here is: "Laissez Les Bon Temps Rouler!" "Let The Good Times Roll!" There is no place like home.
Give a hug, share a smile..life is truly good.
Tracie Hebert-pronounced "A-Bear" for the ones not familiar with the dialect.