All The King’s Horses And All The King’s Men Couldn’t Put The Economy Back Together Again

Houston Chronicle

Looking at this image of debris washed up along Galveston’s seawall as Hurricane Carla battered the coastline in September of 1961 made me reflect on the powerful beating our economy has taken in a period of only five weeks. Yesterday, my childhood restaurant closed, one where I have fond memories of eating gingerbread pancakes and broccoli sour cream omelets, washed down with iced hibiscus tea at the dawn of the 80s. It had an hour wait nearly every weekend for 40 years, and now it has no wait. Another trendy Austin hotspot folded this morning. So much for their lemon shrimp linguine. How can everything tumble so quickly?

photo by Flip Schulke

Our favorite haunts are pummeled, as we stand helplessly by. So much for the Pleasure Pier.

all images from the Houston Chronicle

The water keeps rising. The Mobil is inoperable, but we don’t need the gas because we can’t go anywhere. The Motor Hotel is flooded, but we’re not allowed to travel from home, so it barely registers.

Down is up, and up is down. Small businesses fold; delivery services soar. Horses stand on patios.

Boats prop tilted on the highway.

In the aftermath, we try to salvage what we can. Sift through the rubble.

What do we do now? We have no income. We have no idea if our jobs will exist when we return to them. How will we pay our bills? We don’t qualify for unemployment benefits. This stimulus check will barely get us through the next month on essentials.

So we cry and comfort each other.

We wonder if the lives saved by isolation outnumbers the lives lost by suicide, outnumbers the families left unfed and unsheltered, down to their last double digits in their savings accounts. And still it goes on.

But we can see the light. We can walk toward it. The world will once again re-open, battered and bruised, but hopefully more united, more focused on true priorities and aware of invisible dangers. Together, we will wade out.

9 thoughts on “All The King’s Horses And All The King’s Men Couldn’t Put The Economy Back Together Again”

  1. This is all so sad and you made some Excellent points. Especially questioning if the medicine is possibly worse than the virus. Even after all of these “health measures” are rescinded and people get out folks are still going to get sick. If we do get a vaccine in 18 to 24 months people will be suffering for years.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yep. And who knows the toll this is taking on everyone’s Mental Health? If you’re not an essential worker and you’ve been quarantined and haven’t gone anywhere but a grocery store three times in five weeks, you really feel out of it. I’m so frustrated by the folks who are still gathering and the college kids playing football in the park. But I myself can’t take this isolation much longer at all.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Wow! Those are really powerful photos. So evocative. It’s a very devastating and tragic time for so many, endlessly stressful and anxiety-inducing for many more, and it is not even a flash-in-the-pan kind of event where we know when it is safe to start rebuilding. There is no road to recovery when you can’t even start building the road yet.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you for the perspective, Kerbey. What I am now cheering for in my anxious mental state is for the smart science and medical folk to break through with treatments and a vaccine. Like, tomorrow, with the treatments. And can’t some sort of a rush be put on with the testing on these vaccines that already show hope to shorten the wait at least some?

    Liked by 1 person

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