One thing is for certain: They’ve been there.
New Orleans residents have watched the disaster in the Northeast wrought by Superstorm Sandy with apprehension, shock and an uneasy familiarity that few can relate to. And they've got a message for New Yorkers: Hang in there.
Andy Kopsa, a New York-based investigative journalist who used to live in New Orleans, compiled the encouraging messages on a Tumblr blog while she was in the city working on assignment. “I decided to ride out the storm with my friend Kristy at her place in New Orleans, where we sat glued to the Weather Channel,” she told HLN.
“The biggest thing was my inability to sit still,” she said. She tried to focus on her writing assignment but found it impossible to do so given the events transpiring in the Northeast.
Seeing the long lines, the destruction -- carnage similar to that Katrina left along the Gulf Coast in 2005 -- Kopsa says she was motivated to act.
“I needed to do something -- I wanted to convey a message of hope from my former home of NOLA (who better to talk from a place of absolute authority on hurricanes than New Orleanians?) to my home in NYC,” she said in an email interview.
Kopsa said the project, Nola to New York, has created a much-needed psychological and therapeutic bridge between the two beloved cities, resulting in an overflow of love and support from New Orleans residents to their Northern brethren.
“I also put a call out to all NOLA'ins past and present to send in their own photos," she said. "I had to get home [to New York] but didn't want the project to die. So far, stories and pictures are still coming in.”
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