I Love New Orleans

I arrived in New Orleans on a Saturday night. I was visiting a friend who was one of the first people I met when I moved to Knoxville to be a professor. She was one of the first people I remember talking to about what became my divorce. I saw her therapist for years. We have not really spent that much time together, but because of the kindness she showed she at one of the hardest times in my life has always been very special to me. It’s always fun to see her.

Friday night she had friends and family coming in to town and there was a party at her place. I was offered a spot on the couch, though I’m not sure now why I didn’t just stay in Walden. I had a great time with her friends and went to sleep on the couch as she and a niece competed on the WII.

I thought that I might make my obligatory trip to Cafe Du Monde Saturday morning, but couldn’t quite muster the energy. My second desire was muffaletta from Central Grocery, but they are closed on Sunday, and, even more tragically, on Monday as well. Fortunately, this was New Orleans, and Central Grocery isn’t the only place to get a muffaletta. My friend’s brother and I went out to a local grocery store for muffaletta and other provisions. We accomplished our mission in short order, but our return home was thwarted by an unexpected parade. Parades randomly happening is something that New Orleans is famous for. We tried to get ahead of it to make it home before they got to our place, but we failed. On foot we were able to cross through the hundred or more people on bicycles. Alas, the camera was at home and the cell phone was turned off, so you’ll have to take my word about the parade.

If you were not already convinced that I lead a charmed life, I arrived in New Orleans just in time for the Oak Street PoBoy Festival. On the other hand, this was New Orleans where festivals are nearly as ubiquitous as parades.

We arrived at the festival and I noticed people wearing paper hats advertising Parkway Bakery. I said to my friends “I’ve got to get one of those hats!” and moments later someone offered me a hat.

hat

It was a good day indeed. I installed my hat, which turned out to be a good way for my friends to find me in the crowd.

I wear a hat

There were, of course, all kinds of delectable delights, like crawfish balls and good live music.

crawfish ball

In spite of PoBoyFest, we still wanted dinner. I wanted to go to Port of Call, but I couldn’t get anyone interested in going out for dinner and after over five months of near constant motion, the idea of seeing the same people two days in a row had a fair amount of appeal. We called in an order and went to pick it up. Most places in the US don’t allow such, but in New Orleans it’s pretty much encouraged to order large alcoholic beverages to go. I ordered a Port of Call, the place’s signature drink. When it arrived, I remembered that the drink I wanted was a Monsoon. I considered ordering one of those too, but opted for temperance.

Home with dinner and what was left of my drink, I had another great night hanging out with fun people.

More NOLA Photos are to be had if you’re interested.

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