Green tortoise in the Deep South

Trip Start Jun 01, 2008
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of United States  , Louisiana
Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Ssoooo... my bus trip, number three. This one was called the southern dream and a dream it was. We got picked up in Boston, as you know I was pleased to get the hell out of there so off I went on the bus, happy to be back where I belong and we drove drove drove down to NYC to pick up everyone. We got to spend a few hours there so we headed down to central park had food in Harlem and rushed back to the bus a little late, off we drove only to realize people were missing so an hour sat at a gas station the other side of the bridge and then eventually they arrive by cab and we are al well and good again. The drive continues and after a stop at a point of the Delaware river we head to the bus and our first night drive commences and we wake up in Washington DC.
DC was cool, we went to the capitol the ??? tower and then after a clearly desperate need to sleep we went to a tree in the park and passed out for 40 minutes, and slept like bums in the park, but woke up utterly refreshed! After this we made our way to the big Abe Lincoln statue via the Vietnam war memorial and then we wandered through the city and onto the tube to go get beer and food and again unsuccessfully join a pub quiz.
That evening was another wondrous night drive and being back in my bunk on the bus I was a happy camper. I woke up super early and got up and sat up front as we drive into Louisiana and I got my first taste of the rolling green hills of the south. We spent two days in the great smokey mountains and if I'm honest it wasn't up to that much. We had a nice swim in a river and did some hiking but I wasn't over excited by it. The most important thing was that one of our campsites was infested with spiders, everywhere big things with red bodies and long legs and I slept outside amongst them. A scarf over my face and mummified in my sleeping bag but none the less!
We drove to a town called pigeon forge in Tennessee and stopped at a campsite for showers and a chat with the sweetest locals you will meet anywhere. After dinner we drove on outta there and off into the night. A long drive was ahead of us, the roads into New Orleans are very bumpy so sleep was not in huge supply.
We stopped just outside of the city and stepped out into 85% humidity. Crazy heat! We got set and dressed for the day drove into the big easy and after breakfast in the famous Café Du Monte we wandered the streets checking out the really cool architecture and little stores. The day went by quick and after a palm reading we returned to the bus to get our night stuff before encountering a hillariously drunk bus driver (who incidentally wasn't driving that night!) and we decided we needed to follow suit so we set off to a bar that sells a drink called "The Hand Grenade" with the mentality that 'eating was cheating' so after one of these tasty treats we are all drunk and I mean drunk, we find food, and then go to preservation hall, a local hall where a jazz brass band plays. It was fantastic. We had a great night in there, we also indulged in another local lethal drink but compared to the first one it was nothing and I actually think it sobered me up a little. So back to preservation hall for drunken jazz dancing and half the green tortoise bus taking over the hall. The trumbone player for some reason decided to desert his seat and come and dance with me in the middle of the room before retunring to his post in the dimly lit very hot room. It was undoubtedly one of the best nights and I love New Orleans. One more hand grenade and we were high as kites. Returning to the bus was basically a trail of very very drunk people and very very happy people!

Next morning we woke up in Austin Texas to the best hangover breakfast ever in a parking lot. After this and quite a recovery we drove to Barton Springs which is a huge natural pool so we all headed into the water to escape the heat and then later in the day into Austin which to be honest is a quiet little town with not a lot to do. Kinda quirky though. So after a day in Austin most of the people in the bus ended up in a pub drinking. After this we went to get the best Mexican i've ever had and then after margaritas we head off to the bus again for a night drive.
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