Nobody wants to be my PA?
So, the answer to Monday's question is: It is apparently art. You doubt me? Believe me, I doubted it too when I saw the piles of cinderblocks outside this gorgeous house. I thought the house was under construction or Home Depot had a vendetta against it and just dumped cinder blocks on their front lawn, or that a bunch of college students moving out just left the blocks there (I used cinder blocks to elevate my bed in college). But according to the walking tour, "The current resident of this house, at 2326 Esplanade Ave., has a collection of small metal houses, cinder-block sculptures, and a beautiful metal-crafted marlin on display on the front porch, which is readily visible from the street. The house is known as the Reuther House because it was owned by Joseph Reuther, a baker, in 1913." They said it; I didn't.
Here is the plastic marlin, in case you were interested. DDJ and Dagny, you can figure out how you want to split your gold star.
So let's start at the beginning. Here is a picture of the hotel room.
Do you see that staircase? Yes, my friends, our "room" was really a suite on two floors. And we had a pleasant little welcome gift of wine and cheese. Not too shabby. It's really worth it traveling lots. I highly recommend it. And yes, that big window opens to a nice gigantic balcony, overlooking Orleans Street. What was the view from the balcony, you ask?
DO YOU SEE THE LITTLE DAMN DOG? That's what Ben would've looked like had we kept him long enough for him to grow up. We did not put him to sleep; rather, we sent him to my roommate's sister in Arizona, where he is apparently a big freaking noise disturbance. This does not come as any surprise, since he liked barking a lot during his stay with us. As did this grown-up version of Ben who was across the street from us. Little dogs, big lungs. He would runrunrun to one end of the balcony, barkbarkbark, then runrunrun to the other end and barkbarkbark some more (I have video footage, since I finally figured out how to use it on my camera). You know what would have shut him up? A sleeping pill. We used to do this to Ben when he became intolerable and he would get so confused, it was great. But for the real views from our balcony:
That is St. Anthony's Square to the left (and also at the left end of the balcony), and the cross street in the other picture is Bourbon Street (empty right now because I took the picture in the morning), otherwise known as the stinky street where too-old too-tanned ill-attired people wearing Mardi Gras beads never stop drinking.
The drinking phenomenon is quite impressive. New Orleans reminds me of Disneyland, except with lots trashier people and alcohol. It is amusing to be able to walk around with a drink, but that quickly lost its appeal to me, primarily because of the crush of people we'd be amidst. We only spent one night actually in the Bourbon Street vicinity, and then booked it out of the French Quarter for more low-key (but still drunken nonetheless) times. Ran into a bachelor party on one of the nights, which was all sorts of good amusing fun (except for the guy who was so drunk he kept thinking I was insulting him. I swear, I did NOT call him gay nor a lawyer (not that I think those are insults, per se, okay, maybe the latter one in certain cases) he was totally making things up. I am not that rude. Oh wait, I forgot that sometimes I'll walk away from people mid-conversation if I'm bored. But that's their fault, not mine). As a matter of fact, I saw more large groups of guys here than I've seen anywhere, including in Vegas. And there were very few large groups of women. I like those odds. Why can't it be like that elsewhere?
Onto more picturesque scenes:
Here we are, back on Esplanade Avenue. The picture on the left is of a bunch of random houses, but I liked the pretty colours they were painted. The picture on the right I took out of sheer amusement. "Washeteria", mm? That's right, if I stick -teria on the end of any verb, it becomes a place where those things occur. It makes naming places a lot easier - restaurants are eaterias and bars are drinketerias.
Here are your more stereotypical pictures of New Orleans, taken in the French Quarter. On your left are the Pontalba buildings, which line two sides of Jackson Square. The other picture is just of some random balconies in the French Quarter. Some people seriously get into decorating their balconies and do all sorts of crazy stuff that involve lots of beads and feathers and other such crap. I think that they're at their prettiest unadorned save for a few plants, so that you can admire the ironwork.
We're not done yet with pictures! There are more coming up later this week! (Maybe. If I can get around to it. But we all know I will because I live in a procrastinateria).