Hanging out in the Big Easy

imageThis trip to New Orleans was a spur of the moment decision.

I left home on Saturday, after finishing up at the house in Churchton.   I am meeting up with the Captain and our tiny house on wheels this weekend.

I spent two nights with my Mom in Virginia.  I also had plans to stop to see my sister in North Carolina; however, she ended up coming up to Virginia to see Mom, so I was able to spend some time with her and my nieces on Saturday.

image image image image imageOn Sunday evening, I decided to go to New Orleans, a place I had never been, for a couple of days, before the craziness of Mardi Gras.  I arrived on Tuesday afternoon.

The Captain suggested a nice hotel on Bourbon Street, the Royal Sonesta.  This is a great hotel, clean, upscale, and close to all of the action.  There is a 24 hour monitored and secured parking garage at the hotel.  I elected to stay on the Club Level instead of a room facing Bourbon Street with a shared balcony for the same price.  I think I made the right choice.

imageThe room has been recently renovated, and included with your room is complimentary breakfast, from 8 to 10 and happy hour from 5 to 7 which is located right down the hall.  The breakfast offerings were pastries, eggs, bacon, sausage, coffee and juices.  Happy hour provided wine and appetizers, beef tenderloin in puff pastry,  shrimp wrapped in a wonton wrapper with duck sauce on the side, fig and brie crostini, and a variety of cheeses, cookies and pastries.  After partaking in happy hour, I almost didn’t need to go out to dinner.

imageWhen I was out walking up and down Bourbon Street, taking everything in, I saw these beautiful drag queens advertising their show, so I decided to go.  I went to Deja Vu (half a block from the hotel) and watched these drag queens perform.  No nudity, just men dressed like beautiful women singing and performing.

As soon as the show was over, the DJ announced that no more photos or videos were allowed, and a performer came out, a beautiful young woman in lingerie, and performed a pole dance that was AMAZING.  Her dancing and athletic ability were phenomenal.  I have never been to a strip club before, and I left right after that first dance.  I couldn’t help but wonder, what led this young woman to performing at a strip club on Bourbon Street.  No judgement.

image image image image image image image image imageYesterday, I wandered around the French Quarter, fascinated by the people and the architecture. imageI stopped at the famous Cafe du Monde, which has been in operation since 1862.  Of course I ordered beignets and coffee.  Beignets are funnel cake shaped like a pillow, light and airy, but not much flavor.  However, I am a big believer in trying the specialty foods of any place I am visiting.

image imageHorse drawn carriages lined the street near Jackson Square, which I was told, was a “must see,” where all of the artists display their work for sale.  Perhaps because it was a Wednesday in January, there were very few artists in the area.  However, there is a beautiful church, and the park provided a nice back drop for photos.

image image image image image image image image image image image image imageAll of these photos were taken within walking distance of the hotel, which was SO cool.

In order that this post isn’t so long, Part II will be up tomorrow.

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