Surviving New Orleans: Day Five

Good afternoon! Matthew here, checking in from Downtown New Orleans.
Today’s blog is a little different, since I’m writing it significantly earlier than normal. I try my hardest to squeeze the very last bit of useful time out of each and every day — even if that means sitting down to write the blog nigh midnight.

Well, today I thought ahead.

We will be at a music club later tonight, and that will possibly go until after midnight, and we have an early start tomorrow, so I don’t want to push it. I’ll touch on that concert in a bit. In the meantime, I’ll babble on about what the Pearons were up to today.

We decided to start the morning in true New Orleans style with a trip to the famed Café du Monde on Decatur Street. We partook of the typical tourist favorite: Coffee with Chicory, a Café Au Lait and Beignets. We can tick that off the list.

Next up was a  quick  trip to Algiers Point.
If I could strike through that word multiple times, I absolutely would. The ferry ride there wasn’t bad — too short, if anything — but the wall from the terminal to Library was awful in the midday sun.
Algiers Point is a neighborhood separated from New Orleans proper by the mighty/muddy Mississippi River and with that physical separation goes the metropolitan feel.
There are no skyscrapers on Algiers Point, no busy intersections, no peddlers attempted to shift their wares — and oh yeah — there’s no shade either. The sun beats directly down on you, causing your body to employ its only cooling mechanism: sweat. Yuck.
No matter what you do, you just can’t escape the heat. No high rise buildings to cast shadows, and the large tide-blocking berm around the area prevents even the slightest bit of a breeze from reaching you … but hey, boat rides are cool, right?

Anyone hungry? We sure were … and I had Bratwurst on my mind (as did the itinerary). We headed over to Piety Street’s own Bratz Y’all.

I cringe every time I have to say or type that abomination of a word.

Y’all. Ugh.

Does that even deserve the title of “word”? I don’t think so. It’s been purged from my vocabulary.

We generally pick up minor gifts for family when we go on vacation. I’m not sure why, really. To them, it’s just a random object — be it a coffee mug or some other trinket. It really only holds memories for me and Valeri. To them it’s a “Hey, remember that time I didn’t go to New Orleans?” Either way, we like to bring home goodies to clutter other people’s homes.

Normally, we’re big on walking, but with hands full of bags, a 28-minute walk in the sticky New Orleans air didn’t sound fun, so we resorted to Uber. Usually that is a quick, simple solution and we’ve never had any issues. This time, we watched on the map as our driver took wrong turn after wrong turn, ending up on the complete wrong side of town. We’re not sure what happened, but after 20 minutes of waiting for her to arrive, we were notified the ride had been cancelled and another driver was being dispatched. That driver showed up quickly and expertly delivered us back to our Airbnb. It was time for a quick break to recharge our various devices and relax for a few minutes before hopping in the car and heading off to our next event.

This next event … it’s a big one guys. It doesn’t have an official name, so I’ll assign my own.
I think I’ll call it, “Being Lost in Rush Hour Traffic: A Tale of Frustration.”
Let me tell you … an absolute blast.
If you couldn’t tell, that last comment was positively drenched in sarcasm. I’m having to mop the floor due to how much was dripping from it.
We got so turned around trying to find a coffee shop (the trick was actually finding parking) that we end up crossing the same bridge twice – going the same direction.
I’ve absolutely no idea how that worked, but it did.

After quite a few miles, much muttering and probably too many insults to Valeri’s skills as a navigator (you have my most sincere apologies, dear), we made it to a coffee shop. Stumptown Coffee Roasters.

Valeri and I are kicked back on a sofa in one of their seating areas listening to some sort of Rock/Jazz/New Age hybrid music blasting in one of the other connected rooms.
I haven’t decided whether I like it or not.

Speaking of music, our last stop for the night is a concert at The Maple Leaf Bar. The Rebirth Brass Band will be gracing the venue with their sound. It’s sure to be a good time and I’m sure we will grab photos and videos for your viewing pleasure. Keep your eye on the PhotoStream for that.

Alright … I’m done prattling on. I’ll leave you fine people to go about your lives and I’ll go back to sipping my Cold Brew Coffee and wondering if this music will ever get better.

“How did you fall in love with New Orleans?”
“At once, madly. Looking back, sometimes I think it was predestined.”

   – Andrei Codrescu

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