And that's coming from a Biloxi, Miss. man who fared fairly well during Katrina, all things considered.
George Manneman and his wife, Tracy, rode out Katrina in their home. They also lived through Camille.
"The storm itself wasn't that bad," George
"We're walking in mud right now in our house," Tracy says. "We have about two feet of water in our house. They say it's the first time it's ever flooded up in this area, so we're walking in mud.
"We don't have anything — no water, no nothing, as far as the essentials. So everything that you expect or that you take for granted, like taking a shower or flushing the commodes, we're unable to do that right now."
"Like brushing your teeth," George interjected.
He lived in the same neighborhood as he does now when Camille hit in mid-August of 1969. He was 12 at the time.
"We didn't have a problem at all with Camille in terms of surge," George says. "I don't know if you can compare the two. Certainly, I think, Camille was a much tighter, smaller storm. It went in pretty far west of us. Katrina was a much bigger storm and it was slower, and we got stuck in that east eye wall, and it just drove and drove and drove all morning long. It just brought the water up.
"Everybody around here on the Gulf Coast uses Hurricane Camille as a measure of what to do or not to do with future storms, and in this regard, Camille is the one we thought we could measure it against, but we've just changed that to Katrina."
In Gulfport, Miss.,
"We got lucky," he says. "During the storm, it was very windy, trees snapping everywhere. I watched my neighbor's house get smashed. Oak trees fell on it, and two of my trees in my yard fell on my neighbor's house. They missed my house completely. Blew every shingle off of their house. Missed my house. I still have every shingle on my house. I got lucky, real lucky.
"We have dodged a bunch of bullets. A couple this year … but this one got us good. Got us unprepared too. … It snuck up on us, and when it made the north turn, it come right at us, and a lot of people didn't take that to heart and they got the brunt end of it."
Carolyn Black also lives in Gulfport. She works in a casino that she told Smith is no longer anywhere near where it was pre-Katrina. It was all "pretty scary" she says.