Down in NoLa
When you head south on a road trip there is always one place everyone wants to stop: New Orleans. I always joked (kinda) that when I went I'd find a jazz club, eat gumbo, and drink until I was too big to get back through the door. I didn't quite follow my plan but it was fun anyways!
We made our plans to stay in the French Quarter so that when we "partook" in the city we wouldn't have to drive anywhere and could always walk back to the hotel. Great idea on paper, terrible idea in your manual car driving down the narrow crowded streets of New Orleans looking for the parking garage. But once we found the right spot and got the car tucked away safely it was great.
What's the first stop once you get into the city? Hurricanes at Pat O'Brien's! They were delicious but we couldn't really afford to have too many drinks there (at $14 per drink) so after our first round we went to one of the cheesy, cheap daiquiri bars and got to drink out of one of those long plastic tourist cups and wander around the city.
New Orleans is better when you're drinking. We learned that pretty quick. You take one step out of the hotel and it's hot, and humid, and busy, and dirty, and smelly but you forget all of that pretty quick after your first Hurricane. No wonder they make them so strong.
Walking down Bourbon Street, sipping on our giant hurricanes, we passed a house of voodoo. I had to go in and look around. The people working there were... weird to say the least. But what else would you expect? Yes, I bought a voodoo doll in case you were wondering. It's supposed to help with creativity so get ready for some great blog posts in the future! I asked the guy what I could do to make the doll happy just to hear what he said. It was almost hilarious to hear how into it and serious he was about everything. They wouldn't let us take pictures in the store. It put off "bad vibes" so I'll have to show you the doll in person later.
Upon leaving the house of voodoo we were taking some super cute selfies and ran into Pete.
Then we met Pete!
Pete played the washboard and was actually really good at it. We talked to him for a little while, he played us a song and we went on our separate ways. We should have gotten a video of it but didn't think that fast. Or maybe couldn't remember how to work our phones....
New Orleans Goals
The gumbo is awesome in case you didn't figure that out from the picture. We went to the Gumbo Shop for dinner. It was supposedly the best gumbo in the city (I know they all say that) but I won't argue. It was wonderful.
Actually we did find something that rivaled how awesome the gumbo was and that was the daiquiris!
I got a cantaloupe daiquiri and Rose got a honeydew daiquiri. I didn't even know that those fruits could be made into daiquiris but I'm very glad they were. I think we might have to go back just for that. Rose is still talking about them.
Next stop was the river! But before we could visit all that running water Rose had to make a stop for the bathroom. And since the bathrooms were for customers only naturally we had to buy some more drinks!
Just a couple of drinks....
The brewery was also really cool, as was pretty much everything that we had come across so far! They brewed all their own beer and the bar itself had a amazing atmosphere with the breeze coming through across the river.
And the drinks were really good too
After a few drinks in our favorite brewery the sun was starting to go down and we decided to head back to the French Quarter and see what happens at night.
The thing I found odd about the city was the almost complete lack of jazz music. Yes, we were there on a Thursday night so maybe all the good stuff comes out on the weekends but still, this is THE jazz city! Every club was playing rap or pop or some other dumb genre of music. We couldn't find jazz anywhere! But we did find a really cool piano bar.
This guy was the man!
I don't remember what song they were playing to get us in but there was a live band and they weren't rapping so we stuck around to listen to a few songs. Three hours later.....
They were awesome! It turned out to be a request band so I requested some Dave Matthews (of course). Only one of the guys in the band knew the song ("the man") and he killed Ants Marching! So we had to stay and listen to a few more songs and... maybe.... have a few more beers...
The greatest part of the night was yet to come. After listening to the band for a while we heard a familiar sound filling the bar. Could it be? A washboard...? It was!?! Pete was here performing. I still don't know if he was officially with the band or if he was just here being annoying but he definitely helped make the night.
He even invited some people to play with him on stage
And would happily hand off his washboard to some aspiring percussionists
After a few hours and a few beers we left the piano bar and took one more trip down Bourbon street before heading back to the hotel and calling it a night.
The next morning I wanted to see what Bourbon street looked like in the AM. Spoiler, not a good plan. We headed down from our room with our headaches, wobbled through the lobby, opened the door, took one whiff of the city and went right back up to the room to rest up before our long drive to Houston.
New Orleans is a great city but one night (if done correctly) is plenty. And you have to have plenty to drink... On to Houston!
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He likes pizza.