Randy Smith, the superintendent at Riverlands Golf and Country in La Place, La., continues his chronicles on the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina at his course.
Sunday, Sept. 4 (Six days after landfall)
I woke up this morning with power and a few essentials that we were smart enough to stock up on. The power company has been great about getting most of the town back into service. There must have been a couple hundred line workers, as well as the same amount of tree service workers, out and about.
When I walked out my front door this morning, the first thing that hit me was the stench of human waste. I do not know if this smell is wafting in from New Orleans or just from our own town, but the services here have been outstanding compared to our neighboring parishes.
Today we are again clearing our course of tree limbs. After cutting my greens yesterday, I had decided that my best course of action was to concentrate all of our manpower on our front nine. While hit pretty hard, it only has about 12 trees down with a lot of limbs hanging in the trees that are still standing. My goal is to get those holes opened by this coming weekend. My crew is upbeat at this time, since they are seeing so many people standing in the food stamp lines without jobs. I still do now know how we're going to get them paid. Pay day was last Friday, and we still have not seen the club manager or pro yet. They are both safe, but have not come back into town. If I do not see them by Monday, I will report to our club president and get the OK to release some pay checks or, better yet, get him to pull cash out of the bank to hand over temporarily.
I have only five workers that have reported back so far, but have been getting offers from a few members to help out in the cleanup. We had a couple of small trailers brought in from members to help haul away branches. Today we will work until noon like yesterday. Although we need to put in some long hours to get this course cleaned up, I realize that it is important to give my workers time to search out supplies and relatives. Starting tomorrow, we will extend our hours to 12 per day.