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Thursday, June 25, 2015

The Big Easy

If you follow me on Instagram, you'd know that Lucy and I tagged along with Jon to NOLA this week for a business trip. Jon has business there about once a quarter or so and I have been wanting to join him, solely for the food and music scene. Last year he earned a companion pass on Southwest so I can fly for free with him any time he flies SW so basically the trip cost us nothing. I'm not ready to leave Lucy overnight yet and she's the perfect age to tag along so we thought, why not? Ford stayed with Mimi (and of course thoroughly enjoyed himself) and it was so nice to get away for a few days. A few takeaways from our trip: New Orleans is hella HOT. There are a lot of disgusting strip clubs that made me so sad. I would probably never bring kids there again (love you baby girl, ha!).

We'd heard that you can take babies into bars that served food but that wasn't the case on the French Quarter. We were so bummed to get kicked out of places and didn't get a chance to listen to any jazz (Jon's favorite place is Fritzel's on Bourbon). One of the biggest reasons we love to travel is food. We love eating the local cuisine and our trips pretty much revolve around restaurants. New Orleans did not disappoint. We ate beignets, oysters, shrimp, Po Boys, and a lot of Cajun/Creole cuisine. Thinking back about some of our favorite trips have been when the food is really good (if you've never been, go to Charleston, SC... the food is LEGIT!). So Jon spent the 1st day in meetings and Lucy and I explored on our own. We had a lovely ladies lunch, shared an order of beignets from Cafe Du Monde (and by shared I mean I ate all 3 and she got them later when she nursed), and took a 3 hour bus tour of the city. This was my favorite part because I love the touristy/history stuff. I was by far the youngest patron on the tour and Lucy and I had the back row of seats on a air conditioned charter bus. It was the perfect way to see the city and get out of the sweltering heat. My favorite part was visiting St. Louis cemetery and learning about why the tombs are above ground and how they are operated today. I took Jon back the next day because I knew he would love it. Day 2 we visited the Audubon Aquarium as a family (we always go to a zoo or aquarium on any trip we go on), drove down St. Charles Avenue gawking at the beautiful homes, and ate, ate, ate. We had planned on walking around Frenchmen or Magazine Street to see if we could find someplace that would let our baby inside but it was pouring down rain most of the night. Boo. Bourbon Street was a trip. Reminded me if a dirtier 6th street, mixed with some Vegas. My heart sank as we saw strip club after strip club with girls younger than me flirting with drunk guys trying to make a buck. As fun as the city is, there is so much brokenness and it made me so sad. Jon said he felt like such a dad because he realized how loud it was on Bourbon when we strolled through at night with Lucy (he normally stays ON Bourbon Street when he's there). We stayed at the beautiful Le Meridien and Lucy and I took a few swims in the rooftop pool. I think I may be the only person in all of history who left New Orleans feeling rested and relaxed! Lucy slept 9 hour stretches when were there and was the easiest baby ever so this mama is happy. Jon and I agreed that next time we will leave both kiddos at home and enjoy more of the adult-scene. Thanks for the fun (and the 5lbs I gained) NOLA!

BBQ shrimp at Mr. B's Bistro

Grilled oysters at Acme Oyster House

Chocolate beignets at New Orleans Beignet & Coffee Co.

District Donuts


Chelsea Phelps said...

I feel the same way in that there is just something about NOLA that makes me sad. All the strip joints and heavy drinking is so depressing. That was one of those cities that I am so glad I did once, but I can't say I have much of a desire to go back! Except for the beignets... I'd go back for those ;)

Evelina said...

I have always wanted to visit NOLA! Not so much for the partying, but for the different culture and history. The beignets sound and look delicious!!

Sarah Tucker said...

Thanks for the honest review! I've always know it was dirty, but didn't realize the sadness of the strip clubs. I do want to go for the food!

Adrienne Patenaude said...

the Beignet's look amazing. Ever since I saw a movie that talked about them I have been craving them. The joys if being pregnant. One day I will get to New Orleans to try them.
Looks like you guys had a blast.

Unknown said...

I wasn't terribly impressed by NOLA. Almost all of the locals we had interactions with were rude, even in some of the services (like waiters, hotel staff etc). I'll take 6th street over Bourbon street any day - I just felt dirty & unsafe :( I doubt we go back, but the food was awesome!

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