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-- Special edition --

September 24, 2005

Just darkness and the cry of a million crickets

By Samantha Perez

Samantha Perez

By Josh Gales/ The Tattoo

By Josh Gales/ The Tattoo

By Josh Gales/ The Tattoo

Provencal, LA - Sept. 3, 2005

(Excerpt) I do not belong here.

I do not, I do not, I do not. I donít belong in a place like this. I am not a country girl. Iím really not a city girl, either. Iím just a Perez from St. Bernard, just like the hundreds of other Perez clan members. I do not belong in this place.

But this is the place Iím in, and Iím grateful, to an extent. Iím so grateful that these people are letting us stay in their yard, offering us a spare trailer and a place for our camper. I am grateful for their hospitality and kindness, but that doesnít change the fact that this is a place in which I was not made to be.

Thereís no water here, and it makes me want to cry so much. I look outside the window of the trailer, and thereís nothing but grass, trees, and the downward slope of the hill. There are two houses on this giant lot, as well as their trailer (which they lent to us) and our camper. We had dinner in the house farthest from the camper. The son of the lady offering us part of her home was in town from Houston, and he fixed an amazing spaghetti dinner.

We had to walk there in the dark. There are no lights at night in this place. No stars were out tonight, either. It was just dark. No lights over the river. No orange haze coming over the levee, the lights of ships in the Mississippi River just across the street. Nothing -- just darkness and the cry of a million crickets.

I want to go home.

To read more, click on 'Just darkness and the cry of a million crickets' link here

(This printed edition contains journal entries from 'Just darkness and the cry of a million crickets' and 'Let me go home.')

Starting the day after Hurricane Katrina stormed across the Gulf Coast, killing thousands and chasing millions from their homes, 17-year-old Samantha Perez began to tell her heartbreaking story. This is the second printed installment, containing her second and third diary entries. To read all of Perez's work, including later  entries, follow link. 

To contact Perez, please send an email to The Tattoo

Click here to see how this page looks in print

Donate to Hurricane Katrina relief efforts::
American Red Cross
800-HELP NOW (435-7669) English
800-257-7575 Spanish

America's Second Harvest




Donate and Volunteer:

Adventist Community Services

Catholic Charities, USA

Christian Disaster Response
941-956-5183 or 941-551-9554

Christian Reformed World Relief Committee

Church World Service

Convoy of Hope

Lutheran Disaster Response

Mennonite Disaster Service

Nazarene Disaster Response

Presbyterian Disaster Assistance

Salvation Army
800-SAL-ARMY (725-2769)

Southern Baptist Convention -- Disaster Relief
800-462-8657, ext. 6440

United Methodist Committee on Relief

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