Monday, March 11, 2013

Mon 11 Mar - New Orleans, LA

Monday morning in New Orleans was wet, windy and cold but we decided to brave the elements anyway. The night had been reasonably noisy as we expected given that we were in the French Quarter, so we couldn't really complain about that. The area is truly a bit of a circus.

No breakfast is included at Chateau Dupre, but help yourself to coffee in the lobby is. That is, until the coffee runs out and you ask nicely whether the receptionist can refill it, but if like us you came back for a coffee break after 11am we are told it is "beyond coffee making time". The receptionist complains of having too much to do so she takes away the coffee thermos and all the cups (definitely no more coffee!) and then starts chatting with a bloke from the staff, who, we guessed, was also thinking of himself "over worked" - Note: Irony.

This is how it may look early in the morning... But you better be early...

Of course, yesterday we arrived at the hotel around 3pm and had coffee in the lobby after that.

Tripadvisor warned about an almost total lack of service at the hotel, so we were not surprised. We got the room for a great price and the location is perfect so you can only laugh and shake your head.

Chateau Dupre's lobby - nice enough...

The lobby is also where we do our blogging as the wifi reception is the room is...
Chateau Dupre from outside at Rue Decatur...
Some housekeeping for us today, we offloaded some washing at what seems to be the only public laundry in the hood called Washing Well, ha ha. Very expensive at $10.95 for the load, but you can leave your dirty clothes with them, they will wash and dry, but not fold. Folding is another $5. No, thank you. We can pick up 2 hours later. No coin operated machines for "do it yourself".

We also booked a free walking tour in the Garden District (old beautiful houses and including Lafayette Cemetery) and a Swamp tour; a bit touristy but we felt that it had to be done. Again, both were rated highly in Tripadvisor and are unique to this area.

The morning sees us wander across Canal St into the Warehouse/Arts District where we soon found an "Aussie" cafe...

The "Aussie" cafe had a truly authentic Aussie menu... (Bummer, irony again...)
At the corner of Julia and Camp Street we found this plaque celebrating the humble beginning of Mardi Gras.
A nice length of houses along Julia Street with a hole in the wall cafe which had to be roadtested...
We wandered into a different time and era at the Louisiana Deli and Produce Cafe. You just don't see shops or cafes like these anymore. Stuff everywhere including on the shelves up to the ceiling and rock bottom prices. Two cups of tea, price $1.50. Bargain. Only locals seem to come here. The owner is in the background.
We liked the Louisiana Deli and Produce Cafe so much that we decided to come back later for lunch. Their lunch specials were "Red bean and rice" and "White bean and rice". These are traditional New Orleans fare and had to be tried. Brilliant...
And here is Hans at lunchtime with his Red Bean and Price. Fantastic. Great value at $5.95. Di had the same.
After lunch, the weather cleared up a bit although still windy and cold. We wandered down to the Mississippi. There was a car and passenger ferry at the end of Canal St looking like it was just to embark and going to Algiers Point. We decided to get on.
Great view of the main New Orleans bridge called Crescent City Connection.
Downtown New Orleans from the Mississippi.
Self portrait of us on the ferry. We loved it and it was free. It reminded us of the Georgetown to Butteworth ferry at Penang.
New Orleans and the Mississippi are definitely still busy working river port. Barges and tankers went past during our time on the ferry.
Off again and Hans is checking out the water temperature of the Mississippi. Verdict, not warm, but not so cold either. Probably warm water for this time of year.
After loitering around the eastern parts of the French Quarters for a while, we picked up our laundry and went back to the room for a break.
Dinner was at another Tripadvisor highly rated place called The Gumbo Shop. Yes, popular all right as we had to queue for 20 minutes or so. Here is Di waiting for her artichoke and spinach dip and Gumbo Chicken with high anticipation. Both local dishes and yummy.
Hans had seafood gumbo, which was OK, but not as good as the red bean and rice at lunch.
After dinner, we venture out towards Bourbon St and around the corner, they had this very enterprising lighting at a church. Reach out!
Bourbon St was perhaps not as crazy on a Monday night as it was the night before, but it was still pretty full on. We checked out a few bands from the doorway before entering a joint where the band played some classic rock.
Hans bought a beer. Lucky him. Special deal. You get 2 Coronas for the price of 1. The price of 1 was.... $8. You can but only laugh at the silliness. Di had the second Corona.
Band was OK. They did Joe Walsh's "Rocky Mountain Way" and Fleetwood Mac's "Go your own way" pretty well.
The band also did Rolling Stones "Honky Tonk Woman" as had numerous other bands before. We are still to hear a decent version of that song.
They fully crashed and burned when trying Bon Jovi's "Living on a prayer". We left then.
We checked out the Musical Legends Park, but the band there was just going for a break. Back home via McDonalds as Di wanted a tea. Macca's own security guard is wearing a gun. And the silver painted man was there, creating a bit of a crowd of punters who wanted a photograph of him and them.
What a circus! Good night.


No comments:

Post a Comment