Monday, December 14, 2009

Day 3 in New Orleans: Touring by boat, foot & streetcar! (Thurs. Dec 10th)

Thursday Eowyn & I set off in earnest to see larger chunks of the city. I was very tired, but figured I needed to push myself if I was going to see anything besides my room. Having the food allergies that I have can make traveling so difficult; I have to take the word of chefs that what they've made contains no gluten or soy, and even then it can still be contaminated by contact with gluten or soy. Usually by Day 5 or so away from home, my system starts gunking up inside, and I start feeling a brain fog & immense fatigue... nothing I can exactly pinpoint, but a general malaise that's always in the background, affecting my mood, emotions, judgements, and energy level, not to mention typing accuracy, lol. Being up repeatedly with a baby doesn't help. By Thursday, we'd been away from home almost constantly since Thanksgiving and it was starting to take its toll (although at Thanksgiving I'm sure what I ate was totally ok). Eowyn & I still heeded the blue sky's beckoning call, and it was sure worth it!

Ships through water are still beautiful, no matter what boat & what water. We took the free ferry across the Mississippi to Algiers Pt. This residential area was so quiet that I was shocked! It didn't feel like a city at all; more like a suburban neighborhood... except for how little yard each home had, I guess. I loved all the fun architectural details, the brightly painted walls, and the quirky things people had out in their yards. Why is it that coastal towns tend to have such colorful houses? Buenos Aires, Charleston, the Venitian islands (Burano, Murano, etc.)... is it because sailors are so tired of blue & green & gray while at sea? Or is it, as legend goes in Italy, because sailors' wives were so tired of their drunken husbands careening into the wrong house that they painted each home a different hue? :) It would help blurred vision in the lashing coastal rain, too.

(can you make out the ubiquitous fleur-de-lis in the middle of the wreath?)

Speaking of the fleur-de-lis... someone was shooting some inspirational something or other right off the ferry station. Right after I took this picture, all the kids jumped up & started yelling "We can change the world!" and running around shouting & laughing. Then a gospel choir started singing a song whose words were also "We can change the world." Interesting...

Tiny old gas station

We took the ferry back to Canal St., had lunch at the conference locale (also our hotel), and after I rested up a bit, Eowyn & I headed west to board a streetcar on the the St. Charles line, into the Garden District. The Garden district is famed for its huge mansions and beautiful homes. Two main universities are also there: Tulane & Loyola. I couldn't believe that such big houses were right in the middle of the city, and most decorated resplendantly for Christmas. I guess if you have such a landmark house you're sort of expected to dress it seasonally for everyone's benefit!
I kept thinking of high school English A Streetcar Named Desire, which was set in New Orleans. Apparently N.O. has the longest-running streetcar system in the US, maybe the world?

Here's our view on our way out. It was chilly so we were glad of the warm car!

How far would you go to get a pizza? I took a streetcar for 30 minutes, then walked about 20 minutes, picked this up & headed all the way back. This place is super-healthy and has gluten-free, soy-free pizza for take out! You know how long it's been since I ordered take-out pizza???? I got the "Cajun" version, with shrimp & spices on it. Yum! Unfortunately I didn't realize it had chicken on it, which made me react (to the soy in the chicken feed, I guess). Oh well; it was much less severe than if I'd eaten a whole glutenous pizza!

Such a glorious sky! I snapped this as I walked back along Calhoun St., which runs against the back of Tulane & Loyola Universities, as well as several private elementary & upper schools.

1 comment:

Jacqui O. said...

We need to exchange New Orleans stories sometime! It seems that you went to many of the same places that I did when I was there over Halloween weekend. =)