Thursday, September 9, 2010

To New Orleans and Now Home

So - we delivered Sarah's furniture and spent two nights in the city she now calls home.

Monday was a task day - except for eating a delicious lunch on Magazine Street.
and a light dinner that evening, same street, I think.  We did see the heart of New Orleans.  Bumping along on those very narrow streets which aren't freshly paved - and the parallel parking of cars all up and down all the streets everywhere - park anywhere - anywhere - and walk back to the desired eating establishment - it was good and unique - delightful - and we walked.

We walked through Audubon Park on Tuesday
after having coffee and muffin/bar/bagel
at Sarah's favorite coffee shop.
She refers to it as "my coffee shop".
I was beginning to think she owned it.
Don't have a picture of her coffee shop but she does so I'll just steal these two from 

And our walk through Audubon Park where Sarah enjoys running and meeting friends for morning coffee and just being there for outdoor time and quiet amongst people and squirrels and city sounds.

After that walk we were hungry and Sarah chose a unique place for us to have a traditional New Orleans Po Boy.  She told us that Obama had been to New Orleans recently and chose this spot for his Po Boy experience.  Ahhhh we drove all the way into Mid City which is away from Uptown.  See?  I can say all of this now and picture it.  And we were a little off on our directions and did several start overs with mapquest off of Charlie's phone - and we finally found the place and we were rather spent - so guess what?  It was closed.  On Tuesdays it's closed.  Why Tuesdays?  Sarah told us that in New Orleans people just close their establishments when they feel like it.  Hence, The Big Easy.
Definitely The Big Easy.

Incredibly relaxed.  No hurry.  No push.

So back to Magazine Street and we ate.
Then we rested at our respective places.
We dropped Sarah off at her house.

and we went back to our hotel...
to rest and clean up.

Then out again to The Columns Hotel, recommended by Sarah.
For some late evening fellowship amongst Dad, Mom, Daughter.

Here it is - so beautiful - we could walk from our hotel -
we tried sitting on the porch - which is the favorite thing to do -
but it was really hot that night with no breeze, plus hard to hear each other talk - 

so we went inside and found a nice couch and table with chairs in this room.
This is our perspective from our couch.
I found these last 3 pictures off of the internet.
Hard to describe the gorgeous hardwood throughout this hotel.

Also images off of the internet.

We did drive down to the French Quarter on Monday night.
Sarah wanted us to have a classic Beignet from Cafe Du Monde.
We did and it was really delish - as was their coffee.

And a daytime image of the French Quarter.  It's intriguing at night.

When I'm in these places I feel like I'm wearing a Neon Sign with flashing words,

I think I could "loosen" up a bit if I had more time there - but alas - I am who I am.

There was a disturbing scene.  A man - just so destitute - stumbling about on the sidewalk - unusually disturbing - He appeared incredibly soiled - and it's those situation in which I hate myself for being so removed from such broken people.  and the questions - how can I help him - what could I do.  I am totally inept in those moments.  I also have a queasy stomach for yucky stuff - I hate that too about me.

That man was once someone's infant child.  He was a six year old.  He was a teenager.
He was a young man.  What is his story to end up seemingly homeless and addicted to some substance?  I don't see how he could live much longer in that physical state.  

I wanted to put him in a vehicle and get him to a hospital where they could clean him up and get him much closer to wellness than he was then.  I wanted to tell him about the Savior who loves Him and became like him so that this man could have life and wholeness and life and light.

I'm home and I'm still thinking about that man and wishing I helped people in that condition.

There was another funny thing.  Around Jackson Square that night, in front of the Cathedral - there are several benches with what appeared to be homeless people sleeping and also regular people enjoying the night out.  there are also vendors, people set up behind tiny tables selling opportunities to have your fortune told with Tarot Cards and such.  Yipes.  I too want to get to know these vendors and love them and then share the truth ,  but again, don't know or where to start - 

Okay - that's not the funny thing - here it is.  Some guy who didn't appear particularly destitute.  I wasn't just looking straight on at all these folks we passed.  But as we three walked by he began to beg for quarters or some loose change.  We just ignored him - he yelled after us, "I'm addicted to crack!" we continued to walk and he didn't appear to be on crack, actually - and then he yelled after us as we walked still further away, "YOU SUCK!"  Sarah and I got so tickled.  

So - that was my first trip to New Orleans.

We especially enjoyed being with Sarah, of course.  We think she is precious and beautiful and so dear.
Who doesn't think that about their own angel child?  (how I refer to each of my offspring)

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