The family took a trip to New Orleans.  Laura’s dad had a conference so we tagged along.  We arrived on Tuesday afternoon.  This is the lounge at the hotel.  It was rainy and cold on our arrival.   The weather did improve for most of the week!

We got some oysters for dinner on our first night out.

This is Laura riding the trolley on Canal St.  We got a 1 day pass ($3 per person) which includes the buses and the trolley.  Prior to the trolley ride, we took the bus to Walmart because SOMEBODY (oh yeah, that would be me) forgot to pack underwear!  You can’t buy normal underwear in the French Quarters. Don’t judge but we ate lunch at McDonald’s at the Walmart.  Ok, you can judge.  I am ashamed.

In the afternoon, we walked down to the Aquarium.  We took a quick tour of the Baroque Eagle which was docked next to the Aquarium.   Nice ship!

The Aquarium was actually great.  Laura really loved it.

She loved petting the Stingrays.

Ok, her dad did not think this was impressive but the shark is actually a huge display at the entrance and I tried to make it look like Laura’s hand was getting eaten.  You can’t really tell how gigantic this shark really is.  Oh well.

This was Laura’s other favorite part of the aquarium besides the Stingrays.  We must have spent 30 minutes in here.  Feeding canaries.  Seems odd to have at an aquarium but it is definitely a crowd pleaser.

After the Aquarium, we went to the Riverwalk and window shopped.  We got beignets and coffee at the Cafe Du Monde (not the original).  Laura thought it looked gross and then proceeded to eat the whole thing.

Naval ships docked next to the Riverwalk.  Massive.

Relaxing soak after a hard day.  Ummm, excuse me Laura but your mom should be in there!

The next day, we went to the Audubon Zoo.  We got there kind of late and rushed through a lot.  The day was pretty warm.  The zoo was just ok.  Nothing really special.  The Aquarium was better.

On Saturday, we did something that I wanted to do.  We took a culinary tour.  Saturday was rainy but it cleared for the tour.  We started off at Antoine’s and we tried the seafood Gumbo.   It was yummy.  The tour comprised of the history of ethnic influences and origins of the kinds of food in New Orleans with some tasting from various restaurants.

We went to Arnaud’s for shrimp with Remoulade sauce which was good but Laura just licked the sauce off the shrimp.  Then we went to Desire Oyster Bar and Bistro at the Royal Sonesta Hotel and had turtle soup.  We ate it in the patio next to the fountain.  We both loved this and it was probably the best thing we ate on the tour.

We also had Muffaletta, gelato, beef brisket at various other spots and then red beans and rice at our final stop.   There was a cooking demonstration on how to make roux and various kinds of spices to use for cooking.  All in all, I enjoyed it.

We also went on a Jazz cruise on the Natchez Riverboat.  The weather got much colder and windier.  The beginning of the trip was a tour along the Mississippi river which was very interesting but Laura was not too happy.

The captain was very informative about the history but also all the goings on along the river.  Did you know that the Domino Sugar factory is located along the river?  Who knew?

Dinner was buffet style and food was just fair but the music was good and I guess ambience is everything.

It was a good trip overall but I am glad to be home.  I think I need another week to recover.