Sunday, September 23, 2012

Riding the energy of New Orleans

We arrived in N'Orleans (as it sounds) on Friday, and immediately slowed down.  Not that there isn't a high energy feel of fun and excitement and a general atmosphere of party, as well as anticipation of success for Sunday's Saints game.  Not that the city isn't humming with AARP conventioners (we look young in the crowd!), and other tourists like us, and the regional martial arts championship youth division, and the occasional person lucky enough to live and work here.

No, we slowed down because New Orleans is a FUN stop for us.  Much of the business end of travel has been dealt with and finalized, or put on hold until we meet up with my brother the attorney.  We are here to play, to party, to explore, and to sample everything New Orleans has to offer.

And while there's that high energy feel of fun, excitement, party on - well, it's also 90 degrees much of the day and humid and the muddy Mississippi River looks like it's slowly rolling along - although according to what we read, that really isn't true, it's actually speeding along.  But maybe that's the true metaphor for New Orleans - slow motion and drawling speech on the surface, and below that lazing surface there's in reality a frenzy of action and activity and dancing to the beat of Dixieland jazz and south'n rock'n'roll.

A photo essay of our first day and a half in N'Orleans:

Classic fleur-de-lis refuse receptacle  (because when it has a fleur-de-lis on it, how can you call it a trash can???)

Welcome sign and map here in the Warehouse District

Bus shuttle for the AARP Convention - but it was a Classic New Orleans Coach with the fleur-de-lis

The Mississippi River

Crazy hats and beads in a store - I just liked the riot of color

Classic New Orleans breakfast or snack - beignets and coffee.  I swear, this is the crack cocaine of pastry - light and chewy and sweet and addicting!

Crescent City Bridge (because New Orleans is built on a bend in the river, so the city looks like a crescent)

Louisiana and New Orleans were originally Spanish, then French, then USA - so there are little things that symbolize the Spanish heritage.

This fountain has gorgeous tile work, made in Spain and donated to the city of New Orleans.  I loved the tiles!

Trolley - this one runs along the riverfront, running from the Convention Center to the far end of the French Quarter, all the way to the French Market.

Mask display for Mardi Gras - though I suppose it might be masque, not mask

Inside the covered French Market - crafts and T shirts and tchatchkas at one end, food and produce at the other end.

Beautiful produce!

I LOOOOOVE the architecture around here!  Amazing!  Gorgeous!  

Wedding parade - the band was playing outside the church while the wedding party marched out, and then everyone danced down the street, accompanied by two police cars.  Guests had white squares to wave in the air - the cloth also had gold writing, I'm guessing maybe the bride and groom's names?  Like wedding yarmulkes?  And the grandmothers bringing up the end of the parade in bicycle-drawn rickshaws!

Lovely little garden and the hugest magnolia tree I've ever seen!

Sweet architecture and gingerbread, highlighted by terrific paint jobs!

Loved this witty take on the essence of Bourbon Street!

Someone's wreath featuring a Mardi Gras masque and a Saints football - a different take on the essence of New Orleans!

The original Bourbon Street

Abandoned beads - sort of seemed like a symbol of the glitz and glamour that is just a thin veneer covering the sex shops and trade that also is part of Bourbon Street.  Sort of like the song "House of the Rising Sun" - the shiny surface that gets thrown aside and leads to videos like "Girls Gone Wild" and "the ruin of many a young boy" - at least, that's my take on the fallen bead necklaces.

Another wedding marching down the street with their personal band.

The bride is the one with the white parasol.

THIS is what New Orleans is known for - the music!

Loved the street signs, embedded in the sidewalk!

1 comment:

  1. New Orleans looks like a very unique city. I like the architecture. It seems like everything they do , they do BIG. lol