The following is an account of my crazy adventure to New Orleans.
Day 1, Thursday
10:00 AM–I am getting pretty nervous. I haven’t been on an airplane in over ten years, and I have never gone by myself. I think I’m all packed? I don’t know. The little guy is so hyped up that I am home from work today that I can’t think straight.
I’m currently laying on the bed, surrounded by bags and packing lists, trying to deal with it all. This is not going well so far. Today is also my hubby’s birthday. He says it’s fine, but I still feel bad that he isn’t getting a cake today.
1:30 PM–We’re headed to the airport! At this point, I’m a nervous wreck. I might puke before we even get there…
04:26 PM–I have made it through security (very nerve wracking trying to be as swift as possible), and am now sitting at my gate 2 hours before take off. Good thing I brought my favorite book The Hobbit to read!
03:08 PM–My plane has arrived at the gate. I forgot how big planes are.
08:09 PM–Landed in Charlotte. Had mental breakdown and huddled in a corner and cried. It was not pretty. An airport angel went to a nearby store and bought me tissues and a chocolate chip cookie. To whoever you are, thank you so so much. I hope wonderful things happen in your life. You deserve them!
10:00 PM–The next flights are boarding. I have taken Dramamine. My stomach is in knots. But I am going to do this.
11:30 PM (NOLA time:)–I slept most of the plane ride, and I made it!! Now I just have to Uber to my friend’s apartment. This is a day of firsts for me all around!
Day 2, Friday
12:17 AM–Arrived at my final destination!
6:35 AM–It is morning time! After yesterday’s events and a good night’s sleep, I feel very groggy and stiff.
9:12 AM–I was just introduced to Café Du Monde’s beignets and café au lait. I think I found the taste of heaven. I have had beignets before. But you have not had beignets until you have had them in New Orleans.
11:44 AM–Lots and lots of walking later, we have stopped at a really cool place called Red Dog Diner. It has a really neat atmosphere, delicious food, and drinks for all occasions. I ended up having a cheddar and ham Humpty Dumpty (basically an omelet on steroids). Their Bloody Mary, while not to my taste, was really fancy looking!
2:45 PM–After lunch/brunch, we walked around the different shops on Magazine Street, and then headed to Hansen’s Sno-Bliz for a New Orlean’s famous Snowball. One thing I am seeing around New Orleans that I love is how there are so many little shops and cafes are tucked in alongside homes! It makes a really nice neighborhood feel, I think!
5:00 PM–Woke up from a very wonderful nap. Neither of us intended to nap, but walking nearly 6 miles in a day will do that to you! I think I could sleep the rest of the night.
7:05 PM–I just had Crawfish Boil at a local brewery. Pulled their little heads off and everything. Weird, but really good. Tasted a lot like shrimp!
9:00 PM–We ended the night by stopping at The Bakery Bar some delicious rainbow doberge cake and a cup of possibly the best coffee I have ever had. A roast by a local company called French Truck.
Day 3, Saturday
6:18 AM–Today’s goals are to hit up the French Quarter Festival before it rains and to find out if French Truck sells whole bean coffee for me to take home.
10:25 AM–We’ve had quite a morning for adventuring so far! I’ve been able to see a lot of the French Quarter, which is very interesting. We walked down Bourbon Street (very tame at 9 in the morning), and cut through Pirate Alley.
I got the chance to explore the St. Louis Cathedral. It was built in 1727, making it one of oldest active Catholic Cathedral in the US. Inside, you can find gorgeous architectural work, beautiful paintings, and a bible that belonged to King Louis of France. This particular book was copied sometime in the early 1220s-1230s.
We also explored the French Market, an open air market where I found a ton of souvenirs for the family (at affordable prices!). I got to see all the artists with their wares lined up around Jackson Square. We strolled across the Washington Artillary Park while a man played his bagpipes. We sat on a bench by the mighty Mississippi River and watched the boats go by. We even got to witness a steam calliope player entertain a crowd atop the river boat Natchez.
5:27 PM–Back to the apartment after a full day of festivities and walking (so much walking!). After having lots of very good food at French quarter festival, we headed to Frenchmen Street, the art district of the area. There was so much unique artwork to see! On our route back, we walked down Bourbon Street again (much more crowded this time). I also forgot to mention that we took the street car this morning! It is very picturesque, but riding it felt as if I were riding a PRT from the 1920s. Now I am sunburnt and exhausted. We attempted to make crawfish étouffée for dinner. For a first time attempt (and never having tasted it before) I thought it was pretty tasty!
Day 4, Sunday
7:03 AM–My last full day in NOLA!
8:09 AM–To the Bearcat Cafe for breakfast, where I had the prettiest café au lait I’ve had all weekend! Also had a quite yummy bison sausage biscuit!
12:52 PM–We went to church at St. George’s Episcopalian, an absolutely gorgeous building. I am sad that I didn’t take the time to get photos inside the building, but I know that no pictures would have done it justice. The service itself was also wonderful, as well as the church staff, who were all very welcoming. We strolled through the neighborhood to a wonderful deli/cafe to split a sandwich and chips. St James’ Cheese Company was host to many very delicious looking cheeses, but I stuck with a simple grilled cheese for lunch. The sandwich may have been simple, but the taste was amazing!
1:52 PM–We visited the Milton H. Latter public library, which is a historical mansion turned library. It is absolutely gorgeous inside! And the staff was really friendly and gave me a little pamphlet on the history of the building. After that, it was an indirect route to the apartment, with a quick stop by French Truck coffee to grab a bag to take home with me!
6:50 PM–We had dinner at the High Hat Cafe where I sampled some classic gumbo (yum!) and then to a little family run ice cream shop called 504 ice cream. He made us fresh waffle cones and I think he came from heaven to deliver them to me. I want morrreeee.
Day 5, Monday
8:07 AM–I woke up and saw my friend off to work. I walked down the block to Mojo Coffee and attempted a coffee and croissant, but my nerves are getting to me. I caught a Lyft to the airport, made it through security, and am now hanging out at my departing gate trying to talk myself into being able to do this again.
1:31 PM–Landed in Charlotte. Landing was really terrible this time and felt like it lasted forever. Then we had to sit on the runway for nearly 20 minutes. I almost puked on my neighbor despite having taken Dramamine. My flight to Pittsburgh has been delayed until after 4. I haven’t cried (yet), but I have seriously considered just renting a car and driving the rest of the way home.
4:30 PM–My hubby talked me out of renting a car and into giving the last leg of my journey a shot. Still waiting to board the flight. Took more Dramamine only to realize I was only supposed to take it once a day…oops. Oh well.
6:30 PM–I have survived the airplane! I was met at the airport entrance with hugs from my wonderful husband and stepdaughter. Now, on the hour and a half drive to Morgantown, I am ruefully aware of the fact that I could be home by now if I had driven from Charlotte.
Altogether, I had a really great trip!! I definitely would do it again. However, I would want to plan a scenic route via car next time!!