Ok, again I apologize. I have been enjoying myself too much to write. But even if I only end up doing it every couple of days, I am still writing. Let’s start with yesterday.
6th July 2016
We had to get up early to get the car back to the Rental Company and check-in for our flight. We first flew from Austin to Dallas and then had to get on an airport train to get to our next gate before flying out to New Orleans. We flew in over the
Mississippi. It was such a beautiful sight to fly over (as you can see in the photo). When we arrived we got into a shuttle and headed to the hotel. By the time we got to the Hotel (downtown on the edge of the quarter) my cheeks were so sore. I could not stop smiling. I have been so excited about coming to New Orleans for such a long time now. We dumped our stuff in the room and took to the streets no wanting to waste any time.
We started by finding somewhere to eat at this little restaurant on Bourbon Street called Le Bayou. We sat upstairs on the balcony and drank local beer while listening to the bustle on the streets below us.
It didn’t take us long to spot the hustlers with their bad joke and attempts at conning the easy to spot tourists with their big cameras and offseason bead collection around their neck (Beads in New Orleans are normally found on the streets just for Madi Gras, but all shops sell them year round for tourists) having done a bit of research I knew all the tricks. But it was awesome to see others experience the local cons. Andrew ordered the Cajan Chicken and Gumbo while I ordered the Alligator Po-boy. Both dishes were amazing.
After dinner, we walked the streets a bit before heading back to the hotel for an early night sleep to be ready for our tour the next morning.
7th July 2016
Another early morning today to get to the docks, to go on our Voodoo & Cemetery Tour. We got to the docks, got on the bus and off we went. We learnt so much about the history of voodoo in New Orleans and a bit about the wonders of Marie Laveau, the famous Voodoo Priestess. The bus took us to the beautiful St Louise cemetery.
We learnt that the people of New Orleans are normally buried in mausoleums above the ground as the city was built on a swamp and when you bury something in a sway they always come back. They call they cemeteries ‘Cities of the Dead’ as the numerous mausoleums look like little houses. We also learnt that in a single tomb there would be numerous bodies. After 1 year and 1 day, they could remove the rotten body place the remains in a bag and place it either in the bake or the basement of the mausoleum. This way they could fit more family members in the same crypt.
We visited Marie Laveau grave where we learned that she use to be a hairdresser as well as a voodoo priestess. People would leave bobby pins at her tomb as a gift. The rumor states that if you place 3 ‘X’s on her tomb she will appear to you. The church had gone to so much effort to keep the graffiti at bay and maintain such a beautiful site. There are many rumors about Madam Laveau and her current resting place, as there are many faux mausoleums dedicated to her that are covered in much graffiti. It was both beautiful and heartbreaking.
After our tour, we took to the streets to find some Beignets. We found the infamous ‘Café Beignet’; they are reported to have the best in the city. They were amazing. So light, so fluffy, so sweet. Will need to find a good receipt to attempt to make them at home.
We are about to go down to the concierge and book a few more tours for our time here. Maybe a night-time swamp tour and a steamboat cocktail cruise. There are so many options. We just have to narrow it down to what we want to do in the short time we have here. Well, to be honest, it’s
nearly a week but I feel we won’t even see half of the city still. So big and so much history to take it. Currently reading a book called ‘Mad Madame Lalaurie’. It’s pretty interesting. About this crazy woman who use to torture her slaves until the townspeople found out and drove her from the city. I love reading a good book about places I am visiting.
Tonight we will probably just have dinner at the ‘Clarinet’ the hotel restaurant. We hear it has pretty good food, and then just a few drinks at the bar. Might even go for a late night swim in the pool.
Sorry, I have been a bit slack on writing. This one is a bit long and I understand if you are just here to look at the pictures. To be honest, who could blame you for not wanting to listen to my ramblings and opinions. Until next time my faithful readers and travel lovers.