Right before I moved back to Poplar Bluff, Chris, his girlfriend and I decided to take a trip to Louisiana to look around Shreveport and other areas in order for Chris to decide if he could handle living in Louisiana.
I had been to Louisiana only one time previously with C.E. Manning and it was a quick turn and burn trip so I barely count it.
Chris has a bit of wanderlust like me but has some trophies which keep his wandering more limited.
So he wants to stay fairly close to Missouri or have a means to get back to Missouri often to see his kids.
I jumped on this trip for Cajun food and because Shreveport was the area I was going to move to before dad asked me to come to Poplar Bluff and the area I will still probably go unless I get rich and can afford to leave before I am ready to move there.
I had considered driving myself on this trip, and I should have, I ended up spending most of the journey in the back seat which is not comfortable at all before Heidi packed everything she owns for a weekend trip.
I will not make this mistake again, fuck gas savings.
We left right after I got off work at the dam… well the plan was right after I got off work at the dam… closer to 1000, four hours later…
I had planned on sleeping on the way down but couldn’t… first time I had traveled anywhere of consequence in over a year, I was pretty excited.
We stopped somewhere in Arkansas to fuel up and get our first meal on this trip.
It was a Philly joint that ended up being in a gas station. If I remember correctly, their Philly names didn’t have much along the lines of descriptions and being the picky bastard that I am; I need to know exactly what is in my Philly. So rather than a Philly Cheesesteak, I ended up getting a Meatball Sub with added chicken as I usually add a random meat to a Meatball Sub.
The lady behind the counter lost her mind about it, not in a bad way just thought I was the weirdest guy ever… or at least that is what I thought at the time…
The sandwich was fucking massive without the chicken… I made it through maybe half before I gave up but damn it was good.
By the time we got to Shreveport not only was I done being in the back seat of that rig but I was beyond tired. It was almost dark, and I had been up since 1700 the day before, so we got our rooms.
While Chris and Heidi went to get something to eat and gamble in one of Shreveport’s many casinos, I stayed in my room, ate the other half of my sandwich and was asleep by 2000.
I did get the pure joy of babysitting Penny the wiener dog while they were out… who was in heat… and made it look as though I had an industrial accident in my bed… so that was fun.
I woke up well rested and ready to get in the shower and start a new day!
It was at this time that I realized there were no towels or wash rags in my room… I am not one for complaining too much nor did I want to put on clothes to get these items from the front desk, so I adapted and overcame.
Actually, this was a pretty ghetto Days Inn, and I thought maybe towels and shit would be extra… I later found out that Chris and Heidi had these items, so naturally, I am just the lucky one.
I made due, I took the pillow case off of one of the pillows and used it as a wash rag and my blankets made for a good towel.
With this ordeal past us, we went to a local place for breakfast, and it was great and should be for as busy as this place was.
After breakfast we went exploring Shreveport a bit, we would have done so with C.E. Manning with us, but no one could reach him since we told him we were coming to Shreveport.
After a while of dicking around in Shreveport, we decided to head south toward Leesville to meet up with a buddy from Iraq, Richie and to have a few pounds of Mudbugs.
Those crawdads were fantastic but damn it was good to see that old coonass.
Missed him something fierce.
In keeping up with the hectic pace of this trip, we left Leesville and made our way to New Orleans via Lake Charles and Red Stick, Louisiana.
We got to NOLA and got our rooms, I immediately checked and found out that I had towels!
We were all pretty wiped out after this day’s adventure, so we decided to order Papa John’s even though it killed me a little on the inside but it was pretty late, and not much was open around us, and once morning came we realized why.
We had forgotten about it, but New Orleans had been hit by tornadoes a couple weeks prior to us arriving, and in the daytime, you could certainly tell it.
We drove around and found a place to park around the French Quarter paid for about 5 hours or so of parking and took off for some breakfast goodness at Cafe Beignet.
Upon arriving at Cafe Beignet we hoped we would get some breakfast by lunchtime… that place is apparently packed from open to close, so although they have some amazing looking food, we opted for just getting beignets and coffee so we could eat standing up.
First time having them and I would love to have them again, I hope to make it to at least Shreveport more often in the near future.
After Cafe Beignet we walked the French Quarter for hours and checked out loads of shops and whatnot including the NOLA District 8 Police Department and a cool hot sauce store where I picked Oris the Terrible up a bottle of hot sauce and at some point during our journey I chose Ralph Kramden a new hat.
After finally getting hungry again we decided to a spot to grab some food before we had to go either get the vehicle or pay for more parking.
We ended up at the Olde N’awlins Cookery for what I thought was decent food.
As a starter, we had Alligator both blackened grilled and fried, and I got the Taste of New Orleans Entree which consisted of Gumbo, Crawfish Etouffee and Red Beans and Rice with Smoked Sausage.
After sitting out on the balcony enjoying the weather and view from the Olde NOLA Cookery, we got the truck and drove over to the Lafayette Cemetery to see some of the cool old Mausoleums and the Garden District before we left to come back home.
So many cool things to see in this town, I wish I had much more time here, although the drunk idiots would get on my nerves pretty quick.
We were going to try to slowly travel on our way back home, but Chris got pretty violently sick soon after leaving New Orleans, so we came directly home outside of a stop at Cracker Barrel in Jackson, MS for Heidi and I to grab a bite and have FANTASTIC sweet tea.
It was a fun trip that did not last long enough; I hope I will be able to make it alone one day soon.
Tell me about your favorite aspects of New Orleans and Louisiana in general in the comments!