Thursday, January 17, 2008

New Orleans, Days 2-5

Our New Orleans trip is almost over and I've been busy, mostly just enjoying the city. I haven't had time to write anything down over the last few days. Chrissy has been spending her days in the hotel, mainly because she doesn't like being out in a city she doesn't know by herself and also because it has been cold and windy. I've been in class during the day and spending my evenings touring the city.

Monday, we took a stroll down Decatur Street along the Mississippi River and ran into Margaritaville.
I was so excited. I'm not a huge Jimmy Buffet fan, but I thought it would be really cool to get a Cheeseburger in Paradise. Guess What....

I like mine with ketchup and mustard, heinz 57 and french fried potatos. Big kosher pickle and a cold diet coke. Little different from Jimmy but good food all the same.

Tuesday was more of the same thing. We did some walking around and found a nice restaurant for supper. We also went to Jackson Square. It was a beautiful garden with a Castle-like Catholic church in the background.

I read that people used to be hung or burned at the stake at this very location. Pretty cool huh?

Wednesday, we went to a New Orleans Hornets basketball game. That was a lot of fun. Despite getting really cheap seats, we had a great view.

I know it doesn't look that good from the picture, but we were on the front row of the upper deck and could see everything really well. I'm not a huge basketball follower; mainly because Chrissy said she needed a break between football, baseball and basketball season so she made me pick one to drop. She gets a little tired of nothing but sports almost every night. Anyways, I'm not a big basketball follower, but I'd heard that NO's point gaurd, Chris Paul is one of the best in the game. I wasn't disappointed. You could tell he was good when halfway through the 3rd quarter, Chrissy noticed he only had 6 points and was shocked. She thought he would have been leading the team in points. I explained that despite scoring little, he is a huge part of the game because of the way he "quarterbacks" the offense and creates easy baskets for his teammates. Kevin Durant of the Seattle Supersonics, a rookie out of Texas was not that impressive. He took way too many bad shots and turned the ball over a bunch too. I know nobody cares about basketball, but I like it and I wanted to write about it. So there's my sports rant for the week.

I asked 2 different hotel front desks' (the one where we're staying and the one where my class is being held) if it was safe to walk to the basketball arena. They both said it would be fine. I was willing to take their advice, but during dinner, right before we were going to leave for the game, I asked a policeman the same question. His response was that there was a good chance I wouldn't make it to the game with my wallet, or tickets. Since I've got a pregnant wife, and I like my wallet, I decided to fork out the $10 for the 1.5 mile trip to the arena. Problem was, after the game, there were no taxis around. I happened to overhear a couple of men saying they were going to a hotel close to ours. Assuming safety in numbers, we tagged along with them back to the French Quarter, wallet and purse still intact. Here are a couple more pictures from the game:

Me and My Sweetheart

Hugo the Hornet

Sadly, Hugo never made it to the upper deck but he did point at me as if to say in hornet language, whats up.

This evening (Thursday, day 5) we went to Cafe Dumonde and had some delicious french donuts with hot chocolate. Although it has been good, I was a little tired of the cajun/seafood so we found a nice little Italian restaurant and shared a pizza. Not too much siteseeing tonight, but a relaxing and enjoyable evening just the same. We'll be leaving tomorrow afternoon, so I'm not sure if we'll get to do much else.

Everyone always told me that New Orleans is a dirty city. I don't agree. They wash their streets all the time. This is how I'd rate the city overall:

Kid Friendly: D- DO NOT EVER take a child to Bourbon Street; EVER.

Pregnant Women Friendly: F Its hard when you have to use the bathroom every 10 minutes and there aren't many bathrooms around.

Cost Effective: C+ You can find a hotel for a decent rate. You can also find food at a decent price, but you just have to look for it. Parking (even at the hotel) is expensive, but if you take a taxi from the airport and walk everywhere, you're good to go.

Accessibility: A+ I never once thought that I wished I had a car; except when I got out of the basketball arena. Pretty much everything I would have wanted to see was in walking distance. The trolly or taxi took me everywhere else I needed to go.

Safety: C (You just need to know where to go)

Things to Do: A Basketball, the Aquarium, the Zoo, and just walking around is enough to keep you busy for 4-5 days. I'm excited about possibly going to the museum tomorrow also. I think one of the coolest things we saw was a small blues band playing on the street. There was a tuba, drums, couple of trumbones and a couple of trumpets. They were excellent. There always seems to be things to do or see in the French Quarter.

Food: A- The food was really good, if you like cajun and seafood. I know Chrissy was disappointed with a couple of the restaurants, but for the most part, they were great.

The People: A I would call the people I saw interesting to say the least. Everyone was really nice to us though. People watching was entertainment in itself.

I've had fun, but I miss my bed and I miss my dog. If we have time to go, I'll put some pictures up from the museum.

Until next time.

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