By: T. G. Browning

There's a lot of nonsense written about the lure of the night, the mysterious, magical, misty night. How dangerous. How deadly. How damnable. All nonsense. You want to lose your way, try broad daylight in a muggy, sweltering city. A city with people wandering around looking dazed and then let your guard down. That's when people disappear, leaving no trace. Night is but a candle to to the inferno of Day.

I retired to New Orleans after a career of wandering as a news cameraman, well aware that people inexplicably disappeared all the time. I had planned on buying a small place east of the French Quarter but changed my mind after only a day or two of searching. Why, at that point, I'm not certain, but I needed to get a bit further away from the French Quarter, if I wanted to sleep soundly.

Noise wasn't the problem, I was just uneasy with the thought of so much coming and going. Not comfortable at all. So I checked the real estate market and found a nice place across the Mississippi in Algiers with a post-Katrina bargain price and moved in. That was a couple of years ago.

Now, it would be better if you understood a few things about New Orleans in general and in post-Katrina New Orleans specifically. That hurricane did something to the city, something most peculiar. I can't describe it because I'm not sure exactly what it was. The very air changed and now some outre excess drifts off the Mississippi and Lake Pontchartrain. I noticed it first at the French Market where I buy fresh food for the week, a physical change in the way the breeze shifted and swirled off the Moon-Walk and Mississippi into the market itself.

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