Photo Friday: A Whirlwind Wedding Trip to New Orleans
I mentioned last week that we had just gotten back from a little trip and that I had wanted to update you all on the deets. First up: New Orleans. We headed down there for a wedding and had built in a little time to sight-see as we had never been. Now New Orleans hasn’t been on our vacation bucket list (you know us, we like the great outdoors – whether it’s beaches or mountains or road races – but we’re not really into traveling to cities for vacation). So if it weren’t for the wedding, we probably would have never gone. But I’m so glad we did.
It’s such an amazing city with cool little alleyways that give a distintive European and Southern feel at the same time. And it has such an incredibly unique history. We went on a walking tour and learned all the PG-13 history that has shaped this place. I never knew much about New Orleans other than it has strong French roots. It explained a lot about the current day party town atmosphere and anything goes attitude to discover that the city was populated with French convicts and hookers straight out of the Bastille. According to our tour guide, no one wanted this swamp land and it was sort of passed around as a joke between countries until France finally decided to populate the town with prisoners, giving them the choice of prison or a life of freedom (in an arranged marriage with a convict spouse in a strange new world full of other convict couples). That is where the “ball and chain” came from. The government literally paired convicts up using a ball and chain, married them, and sent them off to the US.
I tried to walk around the area as much as possible, but as you can see from the shiny wet ground in most of my pictures, it rained in consistent short spurts throughout the day. We were incredibly fortunate to avoid any kind of wrath from Tropical Storm Karen other than wind and a little bit of rain, so I attempted to soak up as much tourist time as I could when not at wedding related events. We were also fortunate to have a ton of really good friends (also attending the wedding) that had been to the city before to act as our tour guides. Both the picture above and below are from Jackson Square.
It was so cool how you could walk pretty much everywhere without really worrying too much about traffic in the streets. A lot of the roads were barricaded off to car traffic. I love walking on vacations. During our honeymoon in Italy, I made the hubs walk 10 miles in single day (in the pouring down rain not to mention) so that we didn’t miss anything. He wanted to take the subway. I obviously vetoed. And we both learned our first lesson in marriage: happy wife, happy life
Walking-friendly cities allow you to take everything in. Like the bands that would set up shop in the middle of the road.
Music spilled out of and into the streets. From the bars to the bands in the middle streets, it was everywhere. And so lively.
Food was also everywhere. I think we sampled a little bit of everything from gulf shrimp to po’ boys with debris (the debris is the gravy, grease, and meat that drip to the bottom of the pan when cooking meat) to beignets. Cafe du Monde lived up to the hype. Fried dough covered in powder sugar for breakfast? Yes please.
There was so much to enjoy, from the music to the food to the tourist spots, that you don’t have to be a big drinker to have a great time. I was under that wrong assumption and I’m glad I got the chance to correct it. I’m so inspired to plan our next getaway!