Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Busy Week!

    We left  Florida on the 8th of January and headed to New Orleans.  We chose a campground that advertised a free shuttle to the French quarter so we wouldn't have to drive and mess with parking our big old truck.  The Jude RV Park was in what I can only describe as a parking lot in between some industrial lots and in front of a rail yard.  The area had been underwater after Hurricane Katrina and therefore the area was pretty run down, with a lot of vacant lots and empty buildings and more stray cats than I could count.  The owners were nice enough and the bathrooms clean,  but its not a place that I would recommend.  They did however, provide a ride to the French Quarter, where we had a great day being tourists.

     New Orleans was everything we'd ever heard about, with interesting architecture, great food and fun stores.  I took about 250 pictures, each building or balcony more beautiful than the previous, and the homes in the garden district were just beautiful!

The "Benjamin Button" house

Jackson Square

Louis Armstrong



Nick Cage lived here!

That's a LOT of powdered sugar

     We took a tour of one of the cemeteries and since New Orleans is built below sea level, bodies are buried above ground.  The caskets are placed into a tomb, but the casket only remains for one year and one day.  After that, the casket is removed, the body placed in a bag and placed back into the tomb.  They are pushed to the back with a long pole (hence the term "I wouldn't touch it with a ten foot pole") where they are left to decay, and more than 20 bodies can be placed into one of the tombs.  It was very interesting, and some of the graves have been vandalized and when I poked my camera into one that had the memorial broken open, the photo showed trash and bones!!  (I'll spare you the gross photo!)

     Our tour guide gave us some local information about the area, and told us to be sure to see the house where Brad Pitt filmed some scenes for the movie Benjamin Button; where Sandra Bullock lives, and the house where Nicholas Cage used to live.  The whole area was really pretty - they just don't build homes like that anymore.

     We took the trolley, we ate at the famous Café Du Mond (beignets and café au lait), had some great seafood gumbo, turtle soup and a mufallata sandwich.  It was all delicious! 

cool art gallery
This one is for Mimi!!
     After a tiring day, we got some rest and headed west.  The roads in Louisiana are terrible!  It was like being in a paint shaker!  Take a look:
     Most of Louisiana is swampy...
     We stopped just short of Shreveport, in a town called Natchitoches.  It was a small campground and just as we pulled into the place, we hit a giant pot hole and heard a loud bang.  That can't be good!  In the light of the next morning we found that by hitting that hole, the steps hit the pavement and bent, so now they won't pull out.  Noel used some wire to string them up so they wouldn't completely fall off the trailer, and we hope he can hammer it out enough to repair them without having to buy and install a new set.
     Our next stop was Dallas where we visited one of my dearest friends.  Irene and I have known each other for almost 50 years!!!  We were inseparable all through school, and her mom was like a mom to me.  What a nice surprise to find that her mom was down for the winter!   She and her husband Ken took us out on their boat across Ray Hubbard Reservoir and treated us to a great Tex Mex dinner.  It was a hoot getting her 86 year old mom in and out of the boat!  Thank goodness Phyllis hasn't lost her sense of humor, because there was a lot of pushing and pulling!!
My BFF of 50 years!

A Texas sunset from the boat!
Noel has known Phyllis for a long time too - she used to work for MetroParks and she got me my first job there as a secretary in 1980!
     I'm so mad at myself, because Sunday Irene's kids and grandkids came over for dinner and I was so busy having fun I forgot to take any pictures of her beautiful family!
     So this morning we left Dallas and tonight we are in Amarillo Texas.  The campground provides a limo ride to a nearby steak house.   I'm so glad we chose not to eat leftovers because this place was so fun!  Its called the Big Texan.  The food was great and the place was so fun, with lots of everything you associate with Texas!
Farewell Dallas!


If you can eat the 72 ounce steak meal, its free!  These
two young man tried.....and failed!

When in Texas, eat like a ranch hand!  Great steak!!

     The gift shop had these great pictures - they look like old time photos, but look at an angle and it turns into a zombie or vampire!  Cool!


      Today we are off to Santa Fe, New Mexico!


b and bb cole said...

Without a doubt Anna, the best blog I've ever read! You are funny, interesting and take great video and photos! Have fun!!! xo Beth

Anonymous said...

...was that Phyllis... who used to be the receptionist ( ...think her last name was Sprinkle...or something similar)?
...(not sure how to do this... this is Andi... :) )