Conditions could not have been worse–torrential rains, with thunder and lightning, didn’t let up the entire day.
Interstate highway lane markers were barely visible. At times, barely creeping along, rooster tails of water from passing trucks engulfed my car.
There were rivulets of water flowing across the parking lot. What an introduction to the French Quarter and New Orleans, for my visiting friends. Recently purchased yellow rain ponchos were immediately employed. After a quick jog across the parking lot splashing through standing water; we reconnoitered inside a nearby mall.
Making day trip plans in advance is a gamble. It became a day of exploring neighborhoods–people watching, via streetcars and public transportation. Near the end of the St. Charles line, an inebriated woman, with a bottle of her favorite adult beverage in a paper bag, engaged passers-by in unsolicited, spirited conversations. A young woman with an umbrella tried to ignore her.
At the same stop was another young lady with a device strapped to her ankle. My imagination went to work. She was under house arrest? Her ankle monitor could was about to go off? Would the NOPD show up–take her into custody? My friend, suggested it was probably a physical therapy device. I was more suspicious–something clandestine had to be going on.
Driving through the French Quarter wasn’t the same as walking through it. I felt sorry for the homeless people taking shelter in vacant storefronts. A couple of them were amused by our bright yellow rain ponchos. We looked like four yellow ducks. The street performers weren’t out, neither were the colorful mule-drawn carriages.
We met some nice visitors from the New England area. We joked about parts of the Big Easy being under sea level. They got off at the Harrah’s casino stop.
Decisions had been influenced by weather conditions the entire day. The restaurant, near the parking lot, was a pleasant surprise. The waiter, in my opinion, had a passing resemblance to the actor that portrays the “David Lee” character on “The Good Wife”–minus the cynicism.
Weather conditions weren’t the least bit kind. The Big Easy, whetted my appetite for another visit; to taste more of what this wonderful city has to offer. And, the barbecued shrimp entree, (which I’d never tried before), was delightful.