NOLA continued…

After an even more challenging wakeup than the previous day, we set out for sustenance and discovered the therapeutic goodness of Popeye’s Chicken for curing hangovers. Greased up, we set about exploring the French Quarter at a much gentler pace and saw more great street music, sampled pralines and an abundance of hot sauce to keep us going.

The evening took us to Frenchmen St, a street known for its live music venues such as ‘The Spotted Cat’ (THE place for local music), and an artist night market. Yet again, New Orleans delivered the goods with its food, music and art and we were very, very satisfied.

NOLA

We awoke sore and sorry for ourselves the next day, but were instantly revitalised by the delicious “po’boy” we ate for breakfast at the famous Mothers’ restaurant (a quintessential New Orleans treat). More than satisfied, we explored the French Quarter by daylight including the Mississippi River, Jackson Square, Royal St, Bourbon St and the French Markets. Sponge was in architectural heaven with the French and Spanish influences abounding.

Even more amazing was the live music on every street corner, with incredible musicians and all kinds of music. One in particular (Yes Ma’am) caught our attention and we purchased our very first authentic NOLA cd!

After a siesta at the hotel, we returned to Bourbon St for some more drunken debauchery. We kicked things off at Felix’s Oyster Bar where we watched oyster shucking over dinner (and ironically, no one even ordered them). We soon found ourselves with more drinks (‘grenades’) and inevitably at a strip club, where we were so poor we could only just afford the $1.25 beers between us. Needless to say, we were not the favourite patrons of the evening…

Bucket List Item #10 - live jazz in New Orleans

After a reluctant departure from our luxurious hotel (sweetened by another IHOP feast), we hit the road to New Orleans. On the drive we witnessed some of the destruction still remaining from Hurricane Katrina, which really hit home about the damage she caused.

Our arrival was an interesting one, as we were mistaken for contractors rather than guests! After clearing the confusion with the hotel staff regarding our nondescript white van and less-than-fancy appearance, we finally checked in and lazed about by the pool until we mustered the courage to head into the French Quarter.

As can be expected, we had a riotously fun evening in the action-packed Bourbon St. After several beers and cocktails, we caved to Willie’s Fried Chicken for dinner - with a hurricane slushy on the side. This was followed by another hurricane at Fritzel’s jazz bar, where finally we ticked off another bucket list item - live jazz in NOLA. Amazing! It is quite a wonder we made it back to our room that night…