October 5, 2009

New Orleans

Laura and I are not the most impulsive people in the world especially when it comes to traveling but every now and again a last minute trip just comes together. We found out earlier this week that the very talented Andrew Bird was coming to New Orleans. We bought tickets for his concert on Friday morning and were on the road early Saturday. Eight hours of pine trees later we were in New Orleans.

The orange is the route down and the purple is the route back. The yellow circle is Angola.

We stayed at India House, a great hostel north of the French Quarter.
Upon arriving we took a cable car down to the quarter.

I was surprised at the sheer number of tourists for a non-festival weekend. The Mississippi River

On the advice from a hostel worker we ate at Coops Place which was across the street from the French Market. We shared a sampler plate of Jambalaya, Red Beans and Rice, and some tomato thing. It also came with a piece of fried chicken-which turned out to be the best piece of chicken we had ever eaten. We promptly order two more pieces. It cost $1 for an extra leg; that $1 was the most well spent dollar of my entire life. Oh and they had a couple of bulldogs in the back.

Bourbon Street

The concert was great. We found a good spot overlooking the stage. Bird is a violinist who sings folk-rock songs. He effortlessly switched between violin (picking and drawing the bow), classical guitar, singing, and whistling (by far the best whistler I have heard).

One of the cemeteries, all the grave are above ground due to historical flooding raising people from the ground.

On the way back we stopped at the Angola Prison Rodeo. Angola is Louisiana’s prison for those with life sentences and is located on 18000 acres next to Mississippi. We went primarily for the food which is grown, made, and served by the inmates. We had awesome gumbo and fried potato twists. We got into a long conversation with one guy who went by Gator. He was arrested at the age of 24 because he killed someone in a bar room fight. He was now around 50 and worked as a horse farrier. We couldn’t take any pictures inside the rodeo, but imagine a state fair run by convicts. We had a good time.

One of the prison back roads.

On leaving the prison we needed to use their ferry to cross the Mississippi. We got a little lost (did I mention this prison is huge) but managed not to get arrested, killed, or eaten (Google has the ferry location in the wrong place by the way). It was an awesome experience to be ferried across the Mississippi. The Ferry on the Mississippi River.

Getting a little turned around, we found a cool old silo.


Brian said...

Sounds great, and looks like a lot of fun.

Let me get this straight - YOU ate jambalaya? And red beans and rice? Or, did Laura eat that, and then you hogged all the fried chicken?

Jacob Haynes said...

I ate the Jambalaya and she graciously accepted the red beans and rice.

...And we both fought over the chicken.