JUstDreamInparadise.......JUDI living in Paradise

Sunday, 30 October 2016

Day 27 - New Orleans

We had a few things we wanted to do on our last day.  We still had tickets to the Audubon Butterfly and Insectarium and Aquarium of the Americas (included with our zoo pass), and these were close to another place that we wanted to eat at - Jac's Brewery.  Because it was our last night we also wanted to have a special dinner and we chose the legendary PW Fins.
We once again skipped breakfast and that is fairly easy since we don't wake up until after 9 am each morning. In our defense, the room is very dark when we pull the curtains across.  Philip has been making us coffee and I usually do my blog before we leave the room about 10.30am.
Our walk to the two places this morning took us along Canal Street (the main street in the heart of the CBD).  It is very busy with cars, trams, cyclists and pedestrians all competing for the same space.
It took ages to get inside the insectarium as it is housed within a federal building and everybody had to go through a security check.  Mums with loaded prams took the longest to get through security.
Once through we found the display to be absolutely fantastic.  There were a number of school kids on an outing and the enjoyment they felt was obvious.
We spent our time going from room to room to various categories of insects and finally ended up in the butterfly area.  It was okay but not as good as the one in Kuranda!

From the Insectarium we walked the short distance to the Aquarium of the Americas.  This was my favorite as I have a deep love of anything aquatic.  It was also beautifully laid out and as we walked from area to area we were in awe of the things we saw but hands downs the best for me was the sea-horses. Philip loved the otters and we both were enthralled by the albino alligator, the only one in captivity.

After our enjoyable morning we made our way along the riverwalk to Jac's for a delicious lunch. We probably over ordered but don't judge us as we were very hungry......hahhhaa!

On the menu, fresh (really, really fresh) prawns with a side of fries loaded with shredded brisket and cheese, a brisket Pho Boy for Philip and a Duck Pho Boy for me with a side of tomato soup.

Lunch was finished by 1.30 and I then made our dinner reservation for that evening. In hindsight should have done that before lunch because the only reservation we could have was for 5.00 pm!  Just a couple of hours time!
We walked back to our hotel the long way just to walk off the large lunch.
The menu at GW Fins is amazing and it was hard to choose but Philip decided on the soft shelled crab, followed by Scallop and Mushroom Risotto and to finish off, Creme Brûlée and Irish Coffee.  I had the Lobster Dumplings followed by GW Fins signature dish - Scalibut (Halibut encrusted with Scallops on a bed of lobster risotto with pea puree) and ended with a Espresso Martini.

Honestly the meal was one of the best I have ever eaten but we were like stuffed pigs so we went back to our room, changed into comfortable clothes and walked the length of Bourbon Street.  It was good to walk!
Bourbon Street was alive tonight with people gearing up for Halloween tomorrow night.

 Most people were in some form of fancy dress and there were some hilarious sights like the two elderly gentlemen dressed in suit jackets with dress shirt, bow tie, shoes, socks and boxer shorts!
Gee we have enjoyed our time here in New Orleans.  Ten days gave us ample time to really find the heart of the city and boy does it have a big heart.  We are so pleased to see the folks of New Orleans fully recovered from the hurricane that destroyed their city and they have worked so hard to made it an enjoyable place to visit.  We will probably never make it back again but take away memories that we will have for a lifetime.

Saturday, 29 October 2016

Day 26 - New Orleans

We are starting to wind down now with just two days left in New Orleans before our very long flight back to Australia.  We thought we would try again to find something open on Frenchman Street but once again everything was closed.  It was 11am and nothing really opened until 5.00 pm so we had a delicious brunch in a lovely little cafe on Frenchman.  After this we decided to walk in another area of the French Quarter that we had not been and believe me there are not many areas left that we have not walked!  The area we walked, the Faubourg Marigny, is lovely and very much like the Garden District that we had visited and few days ago.

 We walked for a couple of hours and finally ended up back on Bourbon Street.  We stopped at a bar where there was some great music and ended up staying there for a couple of hours.  The musician had an piano accordion, an electric guitar and an acoustic guitar.  He rotated them and was fantastic at playing each one. The bars on Bourbon are very small and narrow with soaring ceilings.  You can fit no more than about thirty people inside them and there are dozens of them lining the fourteen blocks of Bourbon Street.
Quite a few talented folks jammed with him and the feeling in this tiny little bar was fantastic.  We got talking to a group of six Canadians that had hired a motorhome and were traveling around the country.  There next stop was Memphis and we were very jealous!
There was a lovely courtyard area adjoining the bar and everything they cooked was on a bbq so we decided to grab a bite to eat before heading back to the hotel.  I had pork ribs and they were lip-smacking good!

Back in our Hotel room we enjoy the show below us on Bourbon but tonight was even better when we had a group of men perform there rap routines.  They were so good but it was very funny when they grabbed some "rich white men" from the audience and tried to teach them to dance.

You also see some sad things on the street.  We watched a husband carry his wife over his shoulder (she was totally out of it) and when she got too heavy he placed her in a doorway, took her bag, and we later saw him come back with the car to collect her.  While he was gone she completely passed out on the footpath. Many walked around her but a group of young girls stopped and helped her up, went and got some water and she thanked them by spewing all over them.
Ahh.  Another day in New Orleans. Here are some street scenes.

Friday, 28 October 2016

Day 25 - New Orleans

We took it easy today as we both had a little more wine than was necessary last night!  The Audubon Zoo was on our "to do" list so that's what we did. We had breakfast at our favorite place just across the road from our hotel while we listened to the music...

Then we walked the four blocks to catch the St. Charles trolley car (tram) to the zoo.  The trip to the zoo entrance took almost half an hour but we really enjoy the tram ride. We passed by a home that was decorated for Halloween with hundreds of skeletons in their front yard!  It has become a crowd pleaser.

The homes in the Garden District are magnificent and it was explained to us that these homes were built and owned by the rich sugar cane plantation owners almost 200 hundred years ago.  Sugar cane back then was more valuable than oil and the plantation owners used New Orleans as their "play" area when the sugar cane harvest was finished.
When we reached our stop for the Audubon Zoo we were told that there was a shuttle bus to take us to the zoo entrance but we decided to walk the couple of kilometers through the park.  I'm glad we did as the oak lined walk was absolutely lovely. There are houses right along the perimeter of the park and bang smack in the middle is a golf course.  We stopped for a moment to take a photo of an airplane intersection at 20,000 feet!

The zoo was okay as far as zoos go but because it was so large we had trouble finding things.  It is beautifully laid out if you know where you are going but I think you would need a full day to explore it properly.

After a couple of hours of walking around the zoo we decided to head back Downtown to have lunch.  Philip was craving a Pho-Boy but the best we could find via google search was right at the other end of Bourbon Street so we will visit there another day.  Instead we settled again for Hard Rock Cafe.  This time I ordered a pulled pork sandwich with the compulsory onion rings.  It was so delicious but I could only eat about half. 

 Lunch was late.....about 3.00 pm, so we simply headed back to our room for the rest of the day. However we did wander up to the pool area when we arrived back as the cleaner was still cleaning our room.  It's a nice area and I might try and catch a little sun tomorrow.