Yup, I was on a plane at o'dark thirty on a Sunday morning. Let me just say
there was no hair & makeup go'in on til about an hour before landing in the Big
Easy! My flights were on time, my bags made it and my rental car was a tad
bigger than last year's Matrix. Had my Yahoo maps ready and was not about
to end up driving back & forth on the Causeway like last year. But, of course,
there had to be a snag, as in a parade! God bless these people, they will use
any excuse to have a parade and make me take a detour - REALLY!!! I was
literally a few blocks away from my destination but couldn't see across the
street through the sea of people. After a few distress calls and U turns, I
made it. The birthday girl was wait'in at the front door and we must have
hugged for at least 5 mins. She was a friend of my mom's way before I was born and they kept in touch their entire lives. We've become very close since my mom passed away 9 years ago and I've decided I'm going to visit her every year for her birthday. This year, I missed it by one day because of the Moulin Rouge event, but she didn't care as long as I got there. She is just the cutest thing ever and I love her to pieces.
This part of my trip was about spending time together, shopping and eating. And
boy, did we ever!
I went from cold & rainy California to hot, sticky and 100% humidity in NOLA. I
love the food but no so much about feeling like a wet rag! LOL For the
birthday dinner, we went to a local teppan grill restaurant for her first
experience which she loved. Our adventures included eating tons of seafood and of course, I had to have my beloved muffalatta - yum!
I had seen a feature on the Food Network about an ice cream shoppe called Creole Creamery and we made a bee line there. They had cream cheese ice cream with chunks of red velvet cake in it - OMG! There were several trips to TJ Maxx, which is too far for Miss Leah to drive and she is now proudly a Maxinista! We drove down to Bilouxi, Mississippi to Beau Rivage casino where there was some BIG winnings go'in on! Check out Miss Leah with her whopping $11.05 ticket from the Phat Cat penny machine! That's 10 times more than she won last year; just wait til next year - WOO HOO!
While I was on the plane, I read a feature about the New Orleans Roadfood
Festival. It just happened to be held on my last day there down in the French
Quarter. It was like city food festivals where they have a "taste of" with
plates ranging from $2 to $8. There were 3 blocks on Royal Street lined with
restaurant booths from small locals to biggies like Antoine's and Court of Two Sisters.
There was also the world's longest oyster poboy sandwich made with about a thousand oysters from Acme Oyster House. It was made by 24 of New Orleans' best chefs (and a few helpers) and stretched along 3 blocks on Bourbon Street. Each chef was assigned a car-length section of French bread and there was everything from classic to crazy. As soon as they finished making it , it was cut into pieces and offered free to the crowds and it went really fast!