It was a positively wonderful day. The weather was a nice 70°. The sun was shining and the sky was a beautiful blue. I woke up and headed towards Commanders Palace for brunch.
Well, you can't get in with a T-shirt on.
The couple in front of me were pointed towards a cafe called Coquette just down the road so I tagged myself on with them and we sat at the bar. They didn't stay for a meal, but it was as good a place as any so I ordered myself a Bloody Mary and some Foie Gras Doudin Blanc and had a delightful breakfast.
I filmed the restaurant and my new friends from Florida, and asked one of the bartenders to mix a drink in front of me. He mixed a signature drink and gave it to me free of charge!
After brunch, I passed through the streets and admired the houses, took a stroll through one of the cemeteries and just meandered around.
I decided I wanted to do something else so I hopped in the car and drove to the Crescent City Blues and BBQ Festival. Few things could be better than planning a trip to a city and finding out about a Blues and BBQ festival you hadn't even planned on seeing. Met up with Kendal Rowe and snagged a spicy BBQ poboy. It was delicious but short lived. I should have eaten more of them!
Vasti Jackson rocked the crowds blues soul with his majestic guitar licks, even working his way through the crowd with all of us. I filmed quite a bit with my GoPro before I decided to give him my undivided attention, and not a moment to late as a security guy came through looking for me and my gopro. "NO FILMING" he glared at the man next to me. I chose that moment to slink back into the crowd.
I wanted some rest and retired back to Faith's apartment for a siesta. I meant to go back out but instead decided to save money by sitting around and eating beef jerky in my underwear.
As 8 o'clock rolled around, I skipped down the street to the Allways Theatre and took an hour lesson of Charleston. At 9, The Toddy and His Fully Dressed Poboys swing some tunes at our ears as all manner of individuals jittered and jived around the slick, well worn wood floor. It was a sight to behold and, while similar to all my friends in Nashville, there something infectious about this city. The music has a certain sound and feel that brings out this sense of yesterday. As if you permeated time and no one seemed to be bothered because the music is timeless and everyone just wants to move.
I danced with Becca, Steph, and Jennifer(an actress moved to New Orleans from LA. Small world) Katrina (An unfortunate name to own in this city) was also vivacious and alive that night. She was taking it all in, on Holiday from New Zealand. She had a zest for life about her and was one of the highlights of the evening. She was energized by all the dancers and wanted to be part of it all, so we danced some freshly learned Charleston and listened to the music. She was also in need of a cab. I snagged a cab number for her and said goodbye, then I headed home.
As far as I can tell. If you live in New Orleans, you can get away with anything. The culture is different and the clothes go with that. In Nashville every one is "in a band". There is a certain style of clothing that exists in Nashville, a color scheme of dull grays and dark blues that tends to be close to normal there. Here everyone is outlandishly styled. The only overall encompassing style is one of over-the-topness. Flapper dresses and feathers in the hair. Tattoos, skulls, fancy hats and suspenders. It's such a vibrant city and the music I feel is the contributing force.
The music is an absolutely wonderful change of pace to the omnipresent "Bro-country" permeating Nashville's bars. I went out last night and didn't hear "Sweet Home Alabama" once (or the common 6 times as happens in Nashville). Some may argue I wasn't going to the right bars in Nashville, and there are plenty of great bands all around Nashville playing all manner of music, but Blues and Jazz never sounded so sweet to my ears. The music is enchanting and you can't help but get involved with it and the people around you. On my travels already
I can tell that this will be a difficulty city to top.
Might as well start on a strong note when it comes to trips. Glad New Orleans is delivering.