In January I got a test message from my sister, Traci, that said: Hey. So…Happy Birthday early, Betsy! You and I are going to New Orleans! I booked us flights and we have a hotel from March 13th -March 17th! (Mom helped me pay!)
I was shocked and excited and probably a little trepidatious but mostly excited that I would be starting my 40th year in a city I have wanted to visit for so long. Our room would be located right in the heart of the French Quarter and centrally located to many famous local attractions. We began to plot and plan and make a share pinterest board, like you do.
On the morning of March 13 my husband brought me to the airport where we met up with my sister, and we flew out to New Orleans by way of a 4 hour layover in the Orlando airport. We finally make it to New Orleans around 6pm and we go to our hotel in a memorable Uber ride with a semi-racist who was definitely homophobic, but who I was able to distract with the fact that I am a Saints fan. He drove us by the Superdome after I said this, which was nice, but you know not that nice.
Once in the city we ran out to find a place to grab dinner, and because it was very much dinner time we found a cute little mexican/cuban restaurant to grab a margarita and some food. After that we were wiped from a full day of flying so we went back to the hotel, set an alarm and headed to bed so we would be rested for my birthday the next day.
The 14th we woke up early(ish), got ready and headed out to go to Cafe DuMonde for breakfast, because in New Orleans that is what you do. When we arrived there was a line, but people were social distancing pretty well and everyone was masked. We were in line for about 30 minutes before we reached the front and were buying our beignets and iced cafe au laits. (Fun fact: If you go make sure you have cash because they are cash only, but if you don’t the store across the street has an atm and the fee isn’t too bad at all.) The beignets were delicious and in spite of the fact that I was wearing head to toe black I managed to wear very little powdered sugar which was a true birthday miracle.
Then we headed out to explore and shop. We had no solid plans except that we knew we wanted to go to the Museum of Death, as two gothy murderinos it just seemed like the right thing to do. We made our way to the museum and we found several shops we wanted to check out as they opened for the day. The Museum of Death was fun, they had some interesting displays and information, but Traci and I agreed that it was nothing we hadn’t seen before online. My favorite part was the funerary and mortuary historical pieces. As we left I bought a tank top, an enamel pin and a patch from the gift shop.
We walked around a bit more, bought books in a cute little bookshop, and then grabbed brunch (yep, we ate again) at an adorable restaurant called Evangeline. We then headed to one of the shops we had walked past earlier, Road Kill, where I bought a dress, a bag, sunglasses, two patches and two pins. They suggested to us that we check out two Vampire themed shops they thought we would like. I mentioned it was my birthday and one of the people in the shop pinned a couple of dollars on me, which was added to by a patron of the shop. We browsed a couple more shops, but didn’t make any purchases, then found another place to stop for drinks Cane & Table where I had what might be my personal ideal cocktail Sardi’s Delight which is “A passionfruit daiquiri with gin, a touch of pomegranate, and island spices.”
We wandered back to the hotel to drop off bags, and then headed back out to find Boutique du Vampyre. The shop was fun, and had an amazing collection of Vampire books, so I bought a couple and then we walked over to The Vampire Cafe next door. We grabbed a couple of drinks there as well as Deep Fried Deviled Eggs which were delicious.
We ended the night of my birthday by eating at Cafe Amelie (Mostly because I loved the name. Amelie is one of my favorite movies.)
The next two days we walked around to take many photos, eat so much food, have some amazing drinks. On Tuesday we made it our mission to get a drink at the famous Carousel Bar in the Hotel Monteleon. We befriended a super nice woman from Houston and her adorable and lightly crotchety husband in line, and she decided to adopt us so we could all get on the Carousel at the same time. And It worked!! I ordered a drink that had Absinthe in it, but it is not listed on the menu for the bar and I cannot remember what it was called. It was delicious. The bartender there reminded me a bit of Penn from Penn and Teller, so there is that.
What I am saying is that New Orleans is amazing, even when wearing a mask, and I am ready to return in order to explore more, especially since we never even made it to the Garden District. Now for an absolute photo dump.