Driving into New Orleans’s French Quarter was both challenging and entertaining. Persons of all sorts crowded the city’s sidewalks and streets, slowing down all vehicles with any goal of making it even a block without pause. Leaving was just as bad – perhaps worse. It took us almost a half hour to make it a few yards out of the parking lot. I have never seen so many people dressed up [or hardly dressed] in such a small space, for no particular reason. Sure, Mardi Gras was around the corner, but as far as I knew, there was no special event in town. New Orleans was the liveliest city we’d visited thus far – a great change of pace.
We went to House of Blues for lunch, a restaurant with great ambiance. The walls were covered with all kinds of art, and detailed reliefs of famous people (musicians?) made up the ceiling. The food was good (I could have done without the fried fat around my chicken), as was the service – though it took a little while for the meals to arrive.
Side Note: I preferred my lunch at Harrington’s Cafe in Baton Rouge – yummy shrimp gumbo and warm corn bread. The price was right, and it just felt like home – the hospitality and food.
The colonial influence was very apparent in the architecture and build of the town, whose narrow streets and tight corners put us at close reach to almost anything. We passed by various street performers, local artists displaying their work, and even the old dog performing the ever common pretend-to-be-dead-to-earn-your-owners-some-money trick. The Mississippi River was also a few minutes away – a nice stroll along the pier.
As far as attractions went, we didn’t visit any (not intentionally). The atmosphere alone in New Orleans, however, is attractive enough – for a while, at least. One can only take in so many crop tops and short shorts before it gets old.