I enjoyed New Orleans, as I always do, but life on the mean streets was getting me down, as was the memory of the painfully long drive down, so I headed out to spread out the driving a bit more. I had this idea that I’d go back to Jay’s Imports in Montgomery, AL, where I’d been towed once before. I still seem to have water in the fuel system and have a growing list of things that I want done ASAP (e.g., improved fuel filter, gaskets for the gas tank, check fuel lines, and the main one, a new alternator). Upon seeing that the suggested route to Montgomery from New Orleans went through Mobile, I remembered that my good friend Jim lives in nearby Fair Hope. After some work, I managed to get his phone number and suggest that I’d drop over around dinner time. (About halfway through dinner we would do the math and realize that we hadn’t seen each other in at least a decade.)
Predictably, it took longer to get out of New Orleans than I’d intended. After using my friend’s shower and free breakfast, I drove her and another friend to St. Louis Cemetery #1. I started typing in the name into my Android phone, noticed that the All Knowing Google suggested St. Louis Cemetery #1, clicked it and started following directions. Soon, it was clear that we had gone much further than we were supposed to since they had walked by the cemetery the day before and we were much farther away than they had planned to walk. I poked around at the device some more and somehow coerced it this time to direct us to the cemetery. It’s cool. You should go. There was a guy there who gave us a delightful impromptu tour. He told us about the stupid pyramid that Nicholas Cage claims publicly that he will be buried in. When our guide met Mr. Cage in the cemetery, however, Mr. Cage made it clear that it was a publicity stunt for his latest movie. But I digress. We returned to the car and a $40 parking ticket and moved on. A woman had actually warned us not to park there, but there was no sign, so we ignored her plea.
Then I had brunch with BW. She’d just moved in and there were a few basic creature comforts that her new home was missing. I insisted on driving her to somewhere to get stuff like glasses that could be cleaned and towels. We ran up against her yoga class, so I dropped her there and then ran the stuff back to her house.
Then I had to touch base with my friend whose room we’d partied in earlier. My stainless bottle of Scotch had been left in her room, as had my stainless wine cups, used most recently for Scotch. Sadly, the cups look surprisingly like the hotel’s own sugar dishes and they had been whisked away by housekeeping. An APB was put out on the cups and though the staff was most apologetic, the cups were never produced. Retrieving the Scotch necessitated sitting at the pool bar for a while. And then Joan was to arrive with Muffalettas. Leaving New Orleans without a Muffaletta seemed irresponsible. Then I had to run out of there to meet a friend to give him a gift for a new baby. When he and another friend showed up, it seemed rude not to offer them a beer, so we hung out in Walden for a while.
So it was nearly 3:00 when I finally hit the road. I expected to arrive by about 5:30 and baseball practice was to last until 7:00. Another friend in Fairhope recommended a bar where I might hang out while my friend Jim was at baseball practice with the kids. It sounded lovely. I started typing it into my android phone’s map app and lo! it recommended it. Cool. I tapped it and I was on my way. It was a nice drive. I mused about how nice it would be to sit at a cool little bar for a beer and how civilized it would be to be off the road by 5:30. I decided to declare a Rule that I must always have arrived somewhere and arranged parking by the Cocktail Hour. I wouldn’t have to drink a cocktail, mind you, but having the option open seemed like a very good plan. As I neared the place that Google was leading me, it seemed highly improbable that the bar my friend described could possibly be on where I was headed. I looked again and it turns out that once again, I’d touched the thing that Google recommended, but it decided that what it had recommended was not at all what I wanted. So as I was arriving at the 5:30 Google destination, it turned out that I was an hour from where I really wanted to be. I had Jim text me his address and Google took me there. I made it home just before him.
I actually went to My Place in Fairhope the next day. Though Google maps recommends it as a completion of what I type, it refuses to put it on the map. Stupid Google.