The Crescent City. Basin Street Blues. City Beneath the Sea. The Big Easy. The Confederacy of Dunces. Ramblin’ Man. The City that Care Forgot.
After watching this music video (which I love!), I got a wave of missing good ole NOLA, where I spent six weeks in the summer of 2009. I went there twice on Alternative Breaks too; each time I volunteered with Habitat for Humanity in Musician’s Village.
A favorite for lunch breaks while at the Habitat worksite
The ever-famous beignets and cafe at Cafe du Monde
The St. Charles Streetcar, which I rode from my house in Uptown to the French Quarter on regular basis
The best burger in the world!
What stay in New Orleans is complete without a stop (or five) to Bourbon Street?!
I remember the first time I drove through the Lower Ninth Ward and saw the affected areas. We all craned our necks to see the lettering marked on the doors of destroyed houses- letters that designated whether bodies had been found inside. And once we found them, an eerie feeling would wash over us. Yes, we were tourists- outsiders coming through a neighborhood we had no real connection to. But we then spent hour and days working on reconstruction efforts, so our desire to understand the area we were working in was, in my opinion, both essential and admirable.
New Orleans has an almost mystical quality about it; it’s unlike any other city I’ve been in. It’s an interesting place that I can’t wait to visit again but one where I don’t see myself ever living. The dichotomy between the beauty and destruction lends it a strange, intriguing, inexplicable, romantic, unsettling quality. I want to spend more time understanding the culture, but I also see parts of a culture which I am unsure of. Regardless of my mixed emotions toward the city, I always- without fail- feel a tinge of nostalgia when I see images or songs about it.