Early 2005, just a little after Easter (I think), Alice, Elizabeth and I spent a four days in New Orleans (and four days driving). It was relatively quiet and clean, and we had a nice time. I wanted to take a cooking class, but I chickened out. Maybe Next time. We really liked Lola’s, an absolutely tiny Whole Foods Market, and the Fair Grinds Coffeehouse, all near Esplenade and Mystery. I liked breakfast at Elizabeth’s, but Alice didn’t share my enthusiasm. We stayed near the corner of Royal and Canal, so it was easy to walk many places and drive to everything else.

We also toured the Aquarium, City Park, a giant city of the dead, and, of course, the French Quarter. Alice and I can’t go anywhere without visiting a Library (our typical date destination), so we made a stop there too. The beignets at Café du Monde were quite tasty, and their chicory coffee was okay too. I wish I could get a good beignet in Central Illinois.

I made a point of stopping by the legendary Sazerac Bar at the Roosevelt Hotel to sample a few classic New Orleans cocktails. I don’t remember exactly what I tried (other than a Sazerac), but I didn’t especially care for them. However, the point was to sample good examples of local “delicacies”, so I consider the experience a success. Despite all of the cool things in NOLA, I recall being rather exhausted and frustrated due to the vacation being far more extroverted than I can comfortably withstand. I had the Sazerac to myself and my visit served as an effective afternoon respite while Alice and Elizabeth were napping.

It was a little surreal a few months later when Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans. We’ve occasionally wondered how many of the places we enjoyed are still existence (the adorable Whole Food’s is gone). One goal with this post is to record these things so that we can remember to look them up the next time we’re there.

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