We went to our hometown of New Orleans yesterday for a Mardi Gras marathon of sorts. It was a cold, windy, dreary day to start, as we crossed over the longest bridge in the world over the lake into the city. Here you can see the city in the distance, shrouded in gray clouds, as see from the Causeway bridge.As we approached the city, I was so excited to see this sign posted by WGNO TV saying “God Bless Louisiana” – a bold statement, I thought, for a news station!
We started our Sunday morning with the Latin Mass at Old St. Patrick’s Church on Camp Street. The church is so beautiful. I remember so many Sundays we spent there years ago – all the prayers offered and candles lit. It felt like HOME!Then we went to meet our family at the hotel in the downtown business district. The hotel’s facade/shell is an old brick (historic) business. The inside is totally modernized – pretty cool.After meeting up with everyone, we went to a locally famous restaurant, “Mulates.” We had great fun at our table for twelve. There was good cajun music (harmonica, acordian, washboard…), good food (gumbo, and alligator and shrimp po boy sandwiches), and good company! Warning: even the lunch menu is pricey!Next, we saw our family “superstars” off, as they climbed atop horses to ride in the Bacchus parade. (I don’t picture family and friends without their consent). Then we went back to the hotel to rest and watch other family members get all decked out for the fancy ball they were going to attend. They looked stunning!
After taking their pictures and seeing them safely off, we went down to the street to meet the big parade. Here, you see my son all dressed up in Mardi Gras apparel awaiting the action. You’ll see Will Farrel (who played “Elf”) on the King’s float. The man on the horse in Roman attire is my father- in- law (I think). These guys lead the parade!
One of our favorite things besides catching beads and stuffed animals from the floats were the confetti trucks that would periodically spray the crowds with purple, green and gold bits of paper!The parade ended around 11:30 p.m. Exhausted we walked back to the hotel with our bag of treasures. I slept in a “full”-size bed sandwiched between my two youngest children. There were lots of elbows and knees! My husband camped out on the floor.
Waking up exhausted at 8:30a.m., I needed coffee – strong coffee! The best place to get that in New Orleans is Cafe’ Dumonde. We sat outside overlooking the Mighty Mississippi River, partaking in powdered beignets (square fried donut batter) and a coffee and chicory beverage with steamed milk. Yum!
After breakfast, we packed up and headed home. We thoroughly enjoyed our 24 hour New Orleans – stuff in as much as you can – trip. Now we’re headed home to empty our over night bags and take a nap!