Friday, April 5, 2013

Big Easy Exploration

One of the nice things about the AmeriCorps program and having members in the school system is that our AmeriCalendar mirrors that of the school system. This means that we also get a spring break, despite the fact that we are no longer students. Quite the deal if I do say so myself! So naturally, because of my sense of adventure and inability to sit still for long, I took advantage of this opportunity to get out of Florida and see another city that has been on my list for a while: New Orleans!

Here are the highlights from the trip itself:

- Piling into my car at 5 AM on Friday with Phetsada, Ashley, Vanessa, and Andy, complete with food, drinks, and baggage

- Stopping at a rest stop outside of Orlando and being bombarded by my aunt and cousin on their way from West Liberty to DisneyWorld for the high school's band and chorus trip (total surprise and coincidence)!

- Rolling into New Orleans around 4:30 PM after making great time on the road and checking into our sketch, $60/night hotel

- Navigating around our neighborhood, trying to find the nearest trolley stop so that we could get downtown, while being whistle and cat-called at

- Meeting up with the other 4 (Kiara, Ali, Skeeter, and Max) that drove over on Thursday

- Attending a New Orleans Hornets basketball game with Phetsada, Skeeter, Andy, and Max and seeing them defeat one of the better teams in the league, the Memphis Grizzlies!

- Experiencing the nightlife that is Bourbon Street and being completely blown away by the masses stumbling their way through the street, throwing beads from the balconies, and avoiding the piles of "funness" that littered the street

- Tried the local cuisine, including jumbalaya, beignets, and po-boy sandwiches (all of which were delicious!)

- Enjoyed the sights, sounds, and smells that New Orleans has to offer, including the French Market, the French Quarter, the New Orleans Cathedral, a Voo-Doo shop, Jackson Square, and the mighty Mississippi River

- Spent Saturday night at Harrah's, the local casino, and watched Max win $140 on the slots (while I lost $20)(it was totally his little lucky dance that helped him cash in the big bucks) and Andy cash in around $30, also on the slots (beginner's luck!)

- Enjoyed the company of great people in an amazing city that still has a lot of unexplored nooks and crannies yet to be discovered!

Until the next epic road trip...

Hornets basketball game
Outside the Superdome
Enjoying some good ol' Southern cuisine

Enjoying some beignets at Jackson Square
Waiting for the trolley pre-casino
The girls ready to win some big bucks
Po-Boy from Johnny's
Oldest cathedral in the contiguous USA
Mighty Mississippi River!
Andy, myself, and the Mississippi River
Phetsada and I enjoying some jazz music