Wednesday, May 18, 2016

New Orleans Part 1

Now that I've had a moment to catch by breath, I have a trip to catch up on!  Peter and I had the fun opportunity to travel down to New Orleans on a business trip for him and a for fun trip for me. As my friend Megan just so happens to be living 90 minutes away from New Orleans, the plan seemed perfect!

So off we went on a dreary and wet spring day! Each of the kids gave me a special friend to keep me company if I missed them, so I decided I would send them pictures of their friends hanging out with me along the way. 

Then we got settled into our hotel room overlooking the Mississippi River 

It was after 7 by the time we got settled, and it was a Sunday night so a lot of the restaurants I wanted to try were closed completely or early on a Sunday night. So we finally settled on Cafe Beignet and I tried my hand at a muffletta sandwich and of course NOLA beignets!  

Then it was off to rest for the evening, as we were pretty tired from an early day of traveling.  The next morning Peter was off to his conference and I was off to have some fun with Megan. This was a very good choice as his work has kept him busy from 7AM to 10PM each day.  

I had a couple places I really wanted to make sure and visit on our trip here, typically these stops included food!  Our first stop was to Magazine Street and a stop at a place called District Donuts Sliders Brew.  First we packed up a few donuts for later

And then tried the sandwich I couldn't wait to try, the monte cristo on a donut!  It was so yummy! 

Magazine Street 

Then it was off to our swamp tour!  I was pretty excited about this and it did not disappoint. First we learned a lot about the swamp and how important it actually is.  It was interesting to hear how wild rice, spices, arrowroot for thickening are all down in the swamp and that's where gumbo was created.  Just need a meat source to finish it off, which you can also find in the swamp. 

There was a sweet little duck living in this hole in the tree.  She started with 11 eggs, but she has a snake who likes to live in the tree behind her and come and snatch them from time to time. 

This tree was used in movie princess and the frog. This specific swamp also has some other cool ties to Disney that he explained to us on the tour. 

Then we ended up in the corner where the wild boars hang out and we learned how quickly they multiply (like on average a female has 40 babies a year) and the problems they are creating with crops and the levy system. Needless to say, while where these wild pigs were hanging out they are protected, most of the region it is open season on them to try and control their population. 

We also drove by some houses. They told us that during hurricane katrina, the water was up over the windows on that upstairs.  Crazy to think about! 

And then we headed down to where the hungry gators live.  We'd already seen a few here and there but he wanted to take us out to the part where they are a little bit less fed and more eager to come see us and get a treat. It didn't take long before we were completely surrounded. Guess word spreads fast among the gator community. 

It was a very fun tour and well worth the time.  Bina really wanted us to bring a gator home because she was fascinated with the idea I would be seeing them, so I had to get a picture of her poodle hanging out with Mr Gator. 

After our tour it was off to Mississippi for the night to crash at Megan's before starting another busy day!