My Sin Filled Big Easy Road Trip Recap
Hurricane Katrina and I have come full circle with my Mardi Gras road trip complete. Let me explain. On the night of Sunday, August 28, 2005 as I watched the news they babbled on about another hurricane that could come ashore and cause major damage. Multiple times before in the 2005 hurricane season they got it wrong and it again looked like ridiculous hype. So as I wandered off to bed, I told my roommate, "When I get up in the morning there better be some shit destroyed." Whoops. And the process of healing started just days later as we dedicated a bar we built, naming it Katrina. And now, with my pilgrimage complete, Katrina and I are cool.So what did I think as I rolled into New Orleans fourteen hours later, part of group celebrating a friend's bachelor party? "Oh, so this is what cruising Broadway after Derby is like?" We were just stuck in traffic because by one of the many parades. I'm actually, a little conflicted on what I actually think of the city. Is a place that looks like a shit hole and smells like a shit hole, a shit hole? Or was that just Mardi Gras? I'm struggling to find a reason to return to the city. And when I like a city, when I leave I know what I would return to see and do. I didn't get that with the Big Easy. But I was there for the moment and that was a bachelor party + Mardi Gras.Mardi Gras is exactly as imagined. A drunken mass of humanity, wandering in either direction on Bourbon Street with beads flying and boodies flashing. I can't put it any simpler. And we made sure to experience all ways. Drunk wandering the street. Sober/buzzed wandering the street. And drunk tossing beads from the balcony. I prefer the power position of being in charge of who does and does not get the beads - from above. And there's no limit to the demographics. Young and old. Straight and gay. Chicks and dudes. Everything in between. And they're all showing skin. While Bourbon Street is ground zero for the party once ths sun fades away, its not the only thing happening.Every day there are parades. And parades. And parades. There are Krewes that put on the parades and also design floats. We also think it might serves as a de facto caste system, especially during Mardi Gras. And they parade around New Orleans throwing beads and other goodies (including a sweet football I caught) at all times of the day. The bachelor party crew decided moving forward we will create our own Krewe and return with a float...one day.Then there's the food and drink. I like everything I consumed down there, but if I were to rank the traditional New Orleans food, it would go like this:jambalaya > red beans and rice > creole > gumbo > beignets.The jambalaya, particularly the the andouille variety is fantastic. And rice is one of my favorite foods, I couldn't go wrong with the options. The beignet, while tasty and fried nicely, is a glorified elephant ear. With extra powdered sugar. And the drinksPimm's Cup > Hurricane > Four Loko. The Four Loko is not a New Orleans drink, but with many cities banning it, I'm not sure where else I was going to find it. And let me tell you, Four Loko is a fucking disaster in a can. One tall boy was enough. Forever. The Pimm's Cup is actually a nice chilled citrus drink, while the Hurricane is a classic fru fru drink with rum and pink stuff. However, at the start of the day its not a bad way to get your drink on.And now you want photos. There are photos. You can fnd them here And they're what you would expect...architecture and such. All the photos are safe for work and capture the sense of New Orleans. Most of the buildings were ornately decorated for Mardi Gras - purple, green, and yellow banners, masks, and other trinkets. And despite being known as the French Quarter, thanks to a devastating fire, most of the architecture is Spanish (along with significant Creole influences). Jackson Square is home to St. Louis Cathedral, the oldest cathedral in the United States. So enjoy the photos and use your imagination for anything else that may of happened.
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