Apr 20
  • Sumo

Very interesting having this trip right next to Costa Rica [ scroll down two entries to that trip]. New Orleans is much smaller than I knew…c. 35oK…maybe 125 k people, they say, didn’t come back after Katrina. There have been multiple hurricanes after Katrina. Their damage is still visible from various locations. Music, by seemingly random volunteer players, gathered for tips, here and there, were quite good. Very old buildings everywhere , but also lots of construction, and many ads selling the growth potential and current positive ranking of the city, A huge port. Famous restaurants. The food was excellent everywhere. You can drink on the street and in your car, if you’re not diving. People go to NOLA in large part, to drink and eat, it seems. It’s the city’s mantra. Many homeless. Many smokers. Many panhandlers with a direct approach to help you @ first. Excellent museums. Public transportation worked. Old fashioned “street cars” easy and quick to get around. A huge number of tourists, with families, lots of younger children up to, perhaps High School. Traffic looked impossible in the city. Very diverse and mixed cultural population. People friendly. Not in any hurry. Water [ Lake, Ocean,Miss. River] everywhere so fish/sea food is big. Many churches and of course  cemeteries with all the vaults above ground. We went on several tours – a huge  Steam Paddle Boat on the Miss. –  a  swamp/bayou air boat. History and tradition is as old as New England, or more so. It was the 4th largest city in the U.S., in 1900. Gave birth soon thereafter, to new energy and a long lived jazz age, which was everywhere. I always loved “Louie Armstrong style”  music. A  giant, spectacular WWII Museum,  which is still growing, is there because of supplies delivered during that war effort. These last two aspects of NOLA were huge for me.

A very different trip for us. Especially juxtaposed to Costa Rica. Glad of that perspective.

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