After the bitter taste of a 63-7 lose, we got up the next morning to head to New Orleans. We planned to spend most of the day near the French Quarter. It seemed like everything was pretty close and easy to get to, parking was my only concern.
As we are waiting for our car I noticed a news crew, the local Biloxi station was going a story about fans staying in Biloxi instead of New Orleans. I see the reporter talking to a valet and then a few minutes later that same valet comes up talking to us about the game. Hmmm, Mr. newsman is staging his scenes... very interesting. Finally the reporter and photog come over and asks us a few questions on camera, I mention afterwards I'm in TV in Raleigh, they just kind of move on. Now when ever I encounter someone from another market I at least act like I'm interested, they blow me off... note to self Biloxi news crews... bad. Even though they blew me off I decide to at least give the guy a nat sound moment, the photog sees our Ohio State decorated car and starts rolling, I roll the window down and yell OH! I get the IO from the guys behind him. Your welcome.
After two more hours of driving we finally get to New Orleans. The last time I was in this area was after Katrina and I was in a Humvee, a lot has changes, yet a lot still looks the same. There are buildings that are still falling apart and that need to be torn down, yet three years later, they still stand empty and looking awful. The GPS took us through one of the down trodden areas I'm shocked people are living in some of these places. Then all of the sudden we turn a corner and we are in the French Quarter. I at least expected to have a transitional section on land, instead it was falling down building, next block, beautiful French influenced buildings.
I hate looking for parking in crowded areas and after a half hour we find parking a mile outside the Quarter and we start walking around. To be honest it's like going to another country, you don't feel like your in the States, yet you are. The architecture, the drinking in the streets, the people, just feels different. We had a lot of fun, we saw street performers ranging from Dixieland bands, guys with puppets and a guy posing as if he is climbing a ladder. Also we found countless Voodoo shops, I finally convinced The Wife to go into one and it was interesting, all kinds of Voodoo dolls for sale along with weird statues. I would have taken a few pictures, but every store had the same sign inside... no pictures. For a tourist area I find that a little odd, even the stores selling T-shirts didn't want cameras out, Gilbert the Gnome did not like this idea.
After a few blocks we finally head towards Bourbon Street, holly crap there's a lot of people packed into a small location! You just walk the streets and try to go with the flow. Even though everyone is in the middle of the streets, the road is not closed, people trying to get to the other side of Bourbon had to honk their horns and almost ram their way through. If you are visiting the area, TRY NOT TO CROSS BOURBON STREET, it took probably one car 30 minutes to cross.
I called my sister Julie who had been to the area before and told me about Pat O'Brien and they made the Hurricane, of course I now wanted one, and I tell you what, that drink is STRONG, I defiantly did not need a second, if I tried I'd be laying in a gutter somewhere. The one thing The Wife wanted more than anything else was some Jambalaya, she talked it about it for weeks! After walking for a few hours what better way to rest than to sit and eat. We get in pretty quick at the Cajun Cabin and we even get to sit on a balcony! The food was out of this world. The gumbo I had was better than the one in Mobile and her Jambalaya was just as good. The Wife is now happy and tired of the crowd, we take a few side streets and took at the wonderful town as we head to the Superdome.
To be honest I would have sat in the upper section behind a poll, I mean the tickets were free and they were in a great location. We could see the entire field and we were close enough that the players did not look like ants. We enjoyed the first quarter and after that things got ugly. OSU lost and I am no long wishing to go to any more bowl games.
Even with the two loses we had a great trip I would love to go back to New Orleans again just to see more. Maybe there might be a guys trip there. I think Skybus now services New Orleans... who's with me!