Archive | September, 2015

Katrina Series: Part 7, the finale

Home Again, Home Again I return home in a trance state, which lasts for a good six weeks according to my clients and six months according to my sister. I am irrevocably altered and changed. My internal settings have been stretched. I understand even more deeply the great web of connection. I see the fine […]

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Katrina Series: Part 6

The Land The closer you are to the coast line, the closer you are to areas where the air smells of death. It is the unforgettable stench of decomposing bodies. The scent stays with you, haunts you into remembering what has transpired on the land. The land holds memories, energies, and unfinished business. There are […]

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Katrina Series: Part 5

Altered States The high heat, little sleep, constant awareness, the commingled energies of 600+ disaster workers in a tight space, and the complete unusualness of this experience shifts my perceptual reality. The hours melt and the days merge. I am in a prolonged trance state. Every day in many ways, I act from my shamanic […]

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Katrina Series: Part 4

The Seabee Base The Navy Seabee Base is my new home for the duration. It is an enormous 4 bay hangar that normally houses tanks and massive construction equipment. (The Seabees are the construction arm of the Navy.) Vehicles travel up and down the main concourse. The Red Cross is in the second bay; there […]

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Katrina Series: Part 3

Gulfport, Here We Come Every time a contingent is sent out from HQ, everyone in the building stops what they are doing, stands, applauds, hoots, hollers, and whistles best wishes to the outgoing gang. It is a heartwarming, emotional moment for all. It reaffirms what everyone is doing in that cavernous old K-mart building. That […]

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Katrina Series: Part 2

Hurry Up and Wait Between the Red Cross insignia to paramilitary blues, an abundance of backpacks, and a willingness to talk to anybody, you could spot the assorted volunteers in the Atlanta airport where many of us converged to fly into Montgomery. Night One is spent at a “professional” motel complete with fire ants, in/out […]

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Katrina Series: Part 1

We have just marked the 10th anniversary of the Katrina disaster and I have been remembering my Red Cross days there. My almost three weeks of deployment were profound and life-changing. Over the next week, I thought I would share with you my memories in a few installments from a 10-year-old piece named, “Undercover Shaman: […]

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