Happy Mardi Gras!

Trip Start Feb 06, 2013
Trip End Mar 12, 2013

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Flag of United States  , Louisiana
Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Happy Mardi Gras

I had no idea the extent to which New Orleans shuts down for the celebration of Mardi Gras. You really cannot do anything today except watch people and parades. We awoke to another overcast, rainy looking day with the temperature at 59 degrees and wanted to do something other than watch a parade. However all tours were cancelled and we'd been warned shops are too.

We took advantage of the weather to catch up on some laundry, do some writing, do some trip planning etc. In the late morning we set out for Canal St. and the Zeus parade. Since nearly everyone had the day off the parade route was packed but Richard managed to get a few more baubles. We had wanted to go to the Acme Oyster House for lunch but it was closed for a private party. Right across the street was Felix’s Oyster House – a more local spot – so we nipped in there before the typical lunch crowd to enjoy our first dozen raw oysters and a New Orleans Sampler of Etoufee, Jambalaya and beans and rice. The serving size was perfect and we really enjoyed it.

Although we were a little stiff we wandered down Bourbon St. as far as we could to go to Frenchmen St. – home of great music. We were first cut off by a stage where they were bestowing awards for best costumes. Today we felt out of place without a costume even though we wore some beads. There were some very original ideas and I stopped taking pictures as there so many. There were two restaurants that we had thought about going to for dinner on Frenchmen St. but one – The Praline Connection - had over an hour wait and the other – Snug Harbour - looked shut at lunchtime. Totally overcome by the crowds we wandered back to the hotel amongst rain showers. We saw the Rex parade from a distance but it honestly looked like transport trucks dragging huge platforms – not floats – so we did not try to get close.

At the hotel we re-grouped and decided on a list of seafood restaurants in the French Quarter we would like to try. The first, Deanie’s, had an hour wait so we settled for second choice, Ralph and Kacoo’s. It  turned out to be an excellent choice as Richard and I shared a Seafood Platter – grilled catfish, shrimp, stuffed crab and oysters.

Maybe it was my imagination but it seemed quieter on our stroll back to the Hilton tonight. Maybe the threat of work slowed people down.
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