Monday, July 29, 2002

Road Trip USA - Day 6: New Orleans, LA

Date: 29 Jul 2002 Day #: 6 City: New Orleans, LA
Points of Interest:

Jackson Square in New Orleans, LA


On way to VW dealer for a clutch repair (I learned to drive stick in this car, and had a bad hill experience in New Hampshire), I took picture of the Real World New Orleans house. I dropped my car off at 10am, they’ll call later today.

The Real World New Orleans House:
Honestly, I'm surprised that I even cared enough to take a picture.
At 11:00am, I got Cemetery tour tickets for the 12:20 tour. I called Victoria’s friend Sharon, for lunch at 11:30 only to realize that I'm in the central time zone.  So, it's around 11 am CST (my watch still said noon) and I've just wasted 30 minutes waiting to be early. There's a calliope playing on the riverboat as thunder rolls in. Big, Fat raindrops pull the humidity from the air. I hope it makes the place a little less sticky. While I was waiting for Sharon, a drunk guy came up to me and asked if I wanted to hear a joke. ‘Sure’. Thru stuttering and slurred speech, he got out “What do you call an abortion in Czechoslovakia?” “A cancelled Czech!” So, I was hiding under a tree and then I saw Sharon, so I bid adieu to the drunkard.

Sharon and I got Muffalettas at the Central Market deli and then walked around the French Quarter until I stopped in for the cemetery tours. Sharon told me I have to get a Hurricane (at Pat O’Brien’s) and a ‘sno-ball’, dessert.
Muffalettas at New Orleans' Central Market

Over in the Vieux Carre for the cemetery history tour, Tom Duran was a British guy who did Jack the Ripper tours in London and is now doing cemetery tours in NOLA. The Morgue (our starting point) was in Paul Newman’s ‘Blaze’, we saw the auction house from Double Jeopardy (Ashley Judd) and Lenny Kravitz’s house. Marie Laveau’s tomb (voodoo priestess) who was 1) all knowing/seeing, 2) in multiple places at once and 3) eternally young and beautiful. She was all this because she had many (15+) kids, about 5 of whom were named Marie and looked just like her. Easy Rider got movies kicked out of Catholic Cemeteries. McG called while I was in the tour, by the Protestant (unadorned) area. I just wanted to see how my car was.
Above ground cemetery
Gotta be crowded in there
When the tour ended, I walked back to river and got a frozen margarita along the way. It cuts the heat, ya know. Tried to call VW dealer, but I had a bad connection. So I walked over to the garage, stopping to get a Blue Hawaiian ‘Sno-ball’, like a sno-cone but finer ice shavings.
Sno-ball on a summer day.
You can spend eternity waiting for the bus to the place where the blessed spend eternity.
Turns out my clutch is shot. The mechanic was surprised that I made it here. Much as I’d like, they don’t think I can make it to Houston to get it fixed there. The estimate is around $1,200 including overnight shipping. If I’m lucky, they’ll get it Wednesday and I’ll be on my way then. I pulled some clothes out of my trunk and walked back to Sarah’s office, arriving around 5:30pm. We went for drinks around the French market, then some trinket shopping followed by appetizers on Bourbon St (kitty corner to where saw the grenade guy yesterday on Orleans).
We got on the Ghost Tour, which involved a fair amount of walking around. We saw the saw house where Dr. LaLaurie did vivisection on slaves and inspired Josef Mengele. At one point during the excruciatingly graphic description, I felt like throwing up. When I closed my eyes, I could feel something weird happen to my hearing, like listening thru a tunnel. I was having trouble standing and crouched until my dizziness stopped. I tuned back in later in the story where the LaLaurie got away squeaky clean. Rather intense.

After the tour, we went to Sarah’s office so I could take pictures of her for her folks. Didn't get into bed until midnight.

Read more about my Great American Road Trip adventure.

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