Monday, October 27, 2008

Hurricane, But You Can Call Me Sluricane

Most Tuesday nights I'm at home catching up on my tv shows. Last Tuesday, however, I was here:

The purpose behind the trip was to celebrate the 40th birthdays of Eddie and two of my co-workers, Fraggle and Emcee. While we were in the planning stages of the trip, we consulted another one of my co-workers, The Southerner, who was born and raised in Louisiana and had spent several years in New Orleans. After talking to us so much about his favorite place, he decided to make the trip out as well. Then Fraggle's niece decided she wanted to join in on all the fun. And then my dad revealed how it was one of his lifelong dreams to eat real gumbo and jambalaya in New Orleans (now you know where my eating gene comes from), so my parents flew out to meet us as well.

All of us from The Agency were on the same flight out. But we were staying at different hotels. Our home away for home was The Monteleone.

The Monteleone was a favorite of many authors. From their website: "Designated an official literary landmark by the Friends of the Library Association, the Monteleone has been immortalized in works by Ernest Hemingway, Tennessee Williams, Rebecca Wells, Richard Ford, and Eudora Welty and was frequented by Truman Capote and William Faulkner."

Our room had a view of the southeastern portion of the French Quarter, as well as the Mississippi River.

After unpacking and putting our feet up for a bit, we met up with our friends at Pat O'Brien's. Legend has it that The Hurricane was created at this bar.

Was there anything else we could have ordered? I didn't think a fruity cocktail could really have an effect on me. I was wrong.
There was a cool fountain in the courtyard.
After finishing our hurricanes, we headed down Bourbon St. in search of food. My initial impression of Bourbon St. was that it is far seedier than I imagined, specifically on the western side of the Quarter, the first 2-3 blocks heading east from Canal St. There were strip clubs galore with sad, scary strippers standing in the doorways trying to lure in the convention groups. Eddie, Fraggle and Mr. Fraggle all said that there weren't so many adult establishments previously. Maybe they started up after Hurricane Katrina? Boobies are supposed to cheer people up, right? Although considering that some strippers were literally chasing after old men down the street, attempting to drag them towards the club, perhaps business is not really bumping and shaking a whole lot. We ended up eating at a streetfront restaurant within the Royal Sonesta hotel. [Brief tangent: THANK GOD I did not book this hotel for us or my parents despite all of the deals Expedia tried to throw my way. It's located on a very busy section of Bourbon St. The noise would have driven us crazy and the four strip clubs across the street may have given my mother a heart attack.] Desire is a casual bistro that serves all the traditional fare that one would associate with New Orleans. There should have been pictures of the dozen oysters I shared with Eddie, my fried green tomatoes with crab claw remoulade and my shrimp & grits, but I was a good 3/4 of the way through my meal before Eddie nudged me and said, "Didn't you want to take pictures of that?" D'oh! I told you those hurricanes were strong.
I got a kick out of the abbreviation for the New Orleans Police Dept. since at times it did feel like there were no police officers around despite all the misdemeanors being committed right and left. I'm easily amused like that.
After our late dinner, Eddie and I headed back to the hotel in order to meet up with my parents and get them checked in. After chatting with them for a while, we headed off to our room in order to rest up for the next day. We were going to get an early start on sightseeing the next day.


Insomniac said...

Ah, I had some gumbo for dinner tonight - thought of you!

WeezerMonkey said...

Eddie is 40? I never would've guessed!

Your hurricane-induced stupor amuses me.

A Feminist Gold Digger said...

We went a few months after Katrina and I don't remember any strip clubs being open. I guess even the boobies were down.