Wednesday in New Orleans

This is from our trip a couple of weeks ago.

I hope I keep up this walking when I get home.  Now that my legs are warmed up to it again, it’s imperative that I don’t lapse back in to my old habits (note:  still walkin!!).

Exhausted.  Great day, though.

We got to start out at a decent time today.  Woke up at alrighty!-o’clock (9am), and trundled off to breakfast.  We had pancakes and sausages at Camellia Grill.  Great food, super-fast service.  And we got to sit at the counter and watch the guys cook the food, too.  The counter had a weird layout–kind of like two horseshoes strung together, with the open kitchen at the top of the U’s.

We went to the tourist kiosk and got our tickets for the ghost tour tonight.  Then, after heading back to the hotel to “pay the coffee tax” (a-hem…), we caught the trolley into the Garden District.

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When we hopped off, the first thing we did was to get a mocha blended at a coffee shop.  Then we explored the nearest cemetery.

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The deceased are all interred in vaults above the ground so that their remains don’t wander off down the river during floods.

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There were dates in there ranging from the 1800s to present-day.  No names we recognized, until we stumbled upon a vault for my Clan’s name.  Don’t think any of my ancestors made it this far south, but it’s worth investigating.

The neighborhoods we walked through, which were supposed to be really spectacular, could have been taken straight out of NW Portland.  Really.  It was pretty, but I wasn’t all that impressed.  (Found out later we hadn’t been in the right area, just at the fringes.)

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However, I loved these shrub sculptures:

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Once again, oxygen seemed to be a rare commodity, so we had a very limited time to look around.  Fortunately, the trolleys are air-conditioned.  We got back on and rolled further north (I think), until we hit the end of the line.

At Deceasedville.

Vaults and gravestones and memorials, oh my.  Huge, huge area taken up by granite tributes to the gone-befores.

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I really wanted to check out these places, but the very moment I hit that humidity again, whammo!, I was once again a gasping liability.  Gads, it sucks being so humidity-sensitive.

We stopped at a coffee place just outside the wall of one of the cemeteries so I could get a mocha blended frappe and a protein bar.  I was very uncomfortable in that shop–lots of voodoo stuff.  Now, I know that voodoo is not actually, in its raw, non-Hollywood origins, an evil unto itself.  It’s more like a pagan/Christian hybrid, but I am not comfortable with it.  I was glad to be out of there, even though I had to deal with the humidity again.

After the protein bar, I felt much better, and we spend a good half-hour in one of the cemeteries.  We were especially impressed by one of the vaults that looked like a Druidic cairn.  But most of them looked pretty much all the same, and we finally got our fill of it.

Good thing we headed out when we did–by the time we got back on the trolley, I was gasping for air again.

We got off at Bourbon Street, and went to one of the many hundreds of bars in the area.  This one was right at the tip of what I’ve come to call “smut row”.  I’m just waiting for someone to jump out of one of those “gentlemens’ clubs” (ha!) doorways and try to talk us into going in.  I have several sharp fingernails waiting to rip someone a new one.

Anyway–I digress.

Here’s a tip–if you’re having trouble getting oxygen into your bloodstream, DON’T drink a frozen White Russian daiquiri.  Or any booze, for that matter.  It will only make things worse.  Personal experience…

But we made it past Smutville, with me greedily breathing every stray gust and flutter of cool air like it was chocolate, and went into O’Brien’s again, where we had dinner.  I ordered ice water, and kept that glass pressed to my throat most of the time–best way I’ve found to fix my oxygen problem.

Went back to the hotel, rested for about an hour, then walked back for the ghost tour.

I really had a good time–it was very informative.  There were 27 of us on the tour, and it was a fun group.  Didn’t really get all that far from Jackson Square, but we hit a few interesting places.

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Pirates’ Alley.  Not really that particular street so much (the road itself has the original paving), but the garden behind St. Louis Cathedral and the two adjoining buildings were haunted.

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We went into the Bourbon Orleans Hotel,

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where our guide took us up to the ballroom.  We were in there, taking pictures and being hopeful to catch orbs on our cameras, when I distinctly heard a whispered “hey!” in my ear.

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I thought it was Paul, and turned to look, but there was nobody around me.  So I just said “hey” back and moved on.  I don’t fear death.  It’s all part of the same broader picture.  You come into this world, you’re guaranteed to go out.  Some hang around in-between.  That doesn’t bother me.

There was more, but nothing major.  I didn’t catch anything more.

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So here we are at the end of another day.  Ankles are swollen.  Legs are tired.  All this exercise is going to be the greatest thing for me if it doesn’t kill me first.

 

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