The last time I was in New Orleans was to ring in the 2003 New Year.
The last time I was in New Orleans, was back when we had photos developed and I made my first ever scrapbook.
It was also my last.
Boy, was that stressful.
The last time I was in New Orleans was pre-Katrina.
The last time I was in New Orleans, this restaurant existed:
Uglesich’s was one of my favorites, but closed a few years ago. (The horsetail chair can actually be found in Ryan’s Irish Pub, which still exists.)
The last time I was in New Orleans, I hadn’t yet met my husband.
The last time I was in New Orleans, my girlfriends and I met this lovely Australian couple.
Twelve years later, my husband and I met up with them in their homeland.
The last time I was in New Orleans, I fell in love with the food and the architecture.
After the last time I was in New Orleans, I wrote a little something for my scrapbook.
If you could read that, you have really good eyes!
In any case, here are some excerpts of the write-up of my first experience in NoLA:
New Orleans is a city for everyone… sports fans, art lovers, musicians, all-night partiers and gourmands alike flock to this city year-round.
Check. I’d still agree with that!
I will not lie to you, N’awlins is not a clean city. (We tourists tend to call the city New or-LEENS. However, the locals will call it either New OR-lins or, most often, N’awlins.) In many ways, it can seem run-down, even a little seedy. Such was my first impression.
Check. I’d still agree with that, too.
Still, New Orleans is a city full of history, architecture, art and music. The oldest streetcar still in operation in the U.S. runs along St. Charles Avenue. A dollar-fifty led us past some of the most beautiful and grand houses in the Garden District.
$1.50? Was that round-trip? The streetcar routes have now expanded, but a ride was only $1.25. Or $3 for an entire day. That’s one of the best values in the city. Or, in my opinion, traveling anywhere, really.
In addition to the grandiose architecture, there are art galleries and shops just around just about any corner, fitting all budgets. From photographic prints of the city at its best, to original paintings of New Orleans’ night life; the art not only expresses local talent, but also conveys all that the city represents.
I did buy two colorful jazzy prints that trip, which still hang in my bathroom. This trip, we bought something a little bit different from a local street artist…
And still, there is the music. Jazz was born in New Orleans; however, you will also find Cajun, Blues, Zydeco and Rock in may of the bars and clubs in town. Concerts and performances, whether casual or formal, can be found nightly. And there is something for every taste and mood.
We have a friend that now lives there. When we met up with him, he said that no matter your troubles, you can’t not be happy in New Orleans. There’s always some music to cheer you up. We stopped to listen to several street performers and made our way to Frenchman Street where you can find just about any music your heart desires.
You are right… I am saving the best for last – The food in N’awlins is the BEST! In my opinion, it’s probably the best in the world. We tried traditional Creole and Cajun dishes at very reasonable prices. When asked what were the best restaurants in New Orleans, a local stated, “Anywhere is good because a restaurant wouldn’t survive here if it wasn’t.”
On this trip, I did have a few not-so-impressive meals. My favorite meal happened to be our cheapest one and my least favorite meal was the most expensive one. Go figure.
Have you been to New Orleans? If not, please do go. I found New Year’s to be the perfect time of year to go. The weather was anywhere between the 50s and 70s, so being outside was fine… and we didn’t have to bear the sultry heat of summertime. I’m sure that you’ll find something you love there, too!
Our late February/early March weather was very strange. The locals were complaining of the cold the first couple days – upper 40s, lower 50s were the highs. Then we got a little rain, a little more warmth (up to 70) and then very, very humid.
This trip was very different, but a lot of fun, too! I can’t wait to tell you all about it…
Have you been to New Orleans?
If so, what was your favorite part?