The Gulf Coast
I'm generally back. Ended up spending two nights in NOLA and one night in Mobile, AL. I'll post more tonight, but just want to pass along these thoughts.
NOLA is generally a ghost town. What was once a 75% black city is now 80% white. The Frnech Quarter, Central Business District, and Warehouse/Arts District generally have power and are all in one shape. Everything else seems more or less abandoned. Was asked by 4 different people if I would consider moving to New Orleans if they guaranteed me a great job.
Go pay them a visit. They are a desperate city, eager to regain its swagger and population. Only complaint is the prices could be more reasonable. Hotel room in the French Quarter was $250 a night, dinner for one (steak, single glass of wine, cup of soup, plus 20% tip) was $83 at K-Pauls.
New Orleans, thats not the way to bring visitors back.
Biloxi has serious damage to its beackfront homes. Gulfport and Pass Christian pretty much don't exist any more. Not surprisingly though, 1/2 mile from the beach, damage is minimal.