Down in the Big Easy

This past weekend I spent a few days in New Orleans with some great family friends and my two best friends. It was seriously amazing. I’ve been to New Orleans several times in the past, but I can never get enough of the place. This time of year the weather is perfect, the crawfish are in season, and everyone is a bit too friendly.

Face PaintWe started off the weekend the right way, with drive thru daiquiris, face painting, and a parade. Who knew that New Orleans was so into St. Patrick’s day? It was a rather tame night (I needed my rest), but we tasted some delicious seafood, imbibed a few beers, and got into the N’awlins spirit.

The next day we started off late, as my friends like their sleep, and had a full southern breakfast. Dear goodness I could get used to grits topped with an egg and sprinkled with bacon. Of course our host, Glenn, wouldn’t allow us to leave the house without sampling some crawfish. Breakfast dessert? I don’t see why not! We taught Anastasia how to crack ’em open and downed a few pounds before leaving the house.Kiss at Parade

Our first parade consisted of hundreds of drunkards throwing random items at us. And then there were the lengths of men that gave out flowers with a kiss. At first I didn’t understand the concept, but then we got into it. By the end I had a full bouquet, several new garters, and even a few dollars that were slid into them. Twas quite amusing, but we were starting to get restless and decided to go into the French Quarter.

The evening began with one of the best restaurants in the city, Jacques Imo’s, with some of A’s friends. If you are ever in the area, I suggest checking it out. We were stuffed and oh-so-pleased by the time we left. That night was a mixture of people watching (what else is Bourbon Street for?), great jazz, and some late night munchies. We left the city at 3am (the latest I’ve been up in a while) and were all ready for a rest.

Stirring The PotSunday brought yet another parade. We didn’t spend much time watching as there was no need for beads, but we did devour a few too many pounds of crawfish. They had a forty pound pot going when we arrived. I’d estimate that the three of us consumed at least ten pounds (if not more). It was so spicy that I was constantly wiping my brow, yet that wasn’t enough to keep me away. I don’t know how I lived my life so long without a proper crawfish boil.

Lisa feeding crawfish

We wound up in the French Quarter yet again that night. Had a few drinks at Pat O’Brien’s, a New Orleans staple, before getting the courage to sing karaoke. Right as we stepped on stage, Kenlie walked in to support us. It was great to hang out with her all night. We hopped from one bar to the next, which isn’t tough as they are right on top of each other, and danced our faces off along the way.

With Kenlie

It was a weekend I won’t soon forget. In fact, I’m currently detoxing from all of the amazing eats I had. (It is a rule that you have to try all the delicious food while you are there!) Was great in the moment, but I need to get it out of my system and get back on track. If you haven’t been, I demand that you put it on your list. There are few US cities I would urge you to visit and New Orleans is in the top five.

Have you been to New Orleans? What would you do if you went?

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About Michelle

I'm an engineer living (and running) in Palo Alto, CA.

Posted on March 22, 2013, in Life and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. I loooove New Orleans, but haven’t been since 2004 (I ran my first marathon there!). From your post, clearly I need to get back there ASAP :)

  2. I love how I’m holding a beer like I’m going to drink it (as if!). And I really wish I had my sunglasses back for that pic. Ugh.

  3. I have been once. When I was 18. You can imagine at my age I don’t remember much ;-) I would love to go again, but I’m not sure I could eat those bug-looking sea monsters!

  4. I LOVE NOLA!!!

    My first trip was during St. Patrick’s Day weekend AND it was soo much fun!! So much fun in fact, that I went back May 2007 for my wedding.
    It has been almost 6 years since I was there….and now, I want to go back right NOW!

    Looks like you had a blast!

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