Hi everyone! Sorry for the long hiatus. It’s been a very busy and interesting couple of weeks.
Monday the 7th, I found myself feeling awful at work. My colleagues rallied and got me some Cold FX and sent me home early so that I could rest up before my trip. Tuesday, I was in the middle of a full blown cold (or so I thought). I tried everything. Oil of Oregano, rest, chicken soup, vitamin D and C, Cold FX, every cold med out there, a neti pot, hot showers, etc..etc… Nothing worked, and only the Oil of Oregano and the neti pot made a difference in how I was feeling.
Wednesday, I was still feeling like crap, but was resolved to make it to New Orleans. Pat got me to the airport and I learned that my flight was delayed, so I wouldn’t make any of my connections. Sigh. You see, I’m cursed. Unless I travel with my husband (and even then), something awful happens.
Let me break it down:
Family trip to Florida in elementary school: Water heater on the pool at the house we rented EXPLODED, causing a small fire. We were able to stay there, but the pool was out of commission. Transmission on our family van died on the 3 day drive home. Unseasonably cold weather, keeping us in sweaters and jackets the entire time.
Scuba Diving Trip to St. Kitts in highschool (won through Much Music): Sinus infection, my BFF ended up being terrified of water, boyfriend (the husband, many years ago) was angry I didn’t take him. Mangled my feet with crazy cuts and blisters two days before leaving, missed a flight on the way home. Wasn’t speaking to friend by the end of the trip. Terrible scuba diving conditions.
Family trip to Mexico in University: Strep throat and sinus infection, super busy with classes, studied and slept the entire trip.
Road trip to Halifax with friends: Major drama, ran out of gas on the way home.
Family Wedding Trip to Cuba (with Husband): A week before the trip there was a tragic accident resulting in me breaking my hand in two places. IBS attack while I was there. Family drama.
Family trip to Cuba (with husband): Resort ended up being meh, food poisoning, ended up babysitting an elderly family friend, family drama.
So, yeah, not a great travel record. Amazingly, I never let it get me down and still absolutely love travelling. The only exceptions to the curse have been Trips to visit my grandmother before she died in Regina and my honeymoon.
So, back to Wednesday.
Day 1: I pouted and looked pathetic, so I was snuck on a direct flight to Washington (instead of going through Montreal), so I made it in without an issue. Yay! Upon my arrival, my friend Isaac informed me that he had cancelled our hostel, because of the super sketchy neighbourhood. Instead, we stayed at Bourbon House in the Garden District. It was my first hostel experience, and I was terrified. I had no planned on sharing a room with strangers, and coming in late at night didn’t make things any easier. I didn’t sleep at all, felt awful and was sure I was going to be robbed.
Basically, I was a princess. Everything was fine, the hostel was clean, the owners lovely, my roommates were great and I wish we had stayed.
Me, sick and waiting at the airport.
Day 2: Due to not sleeping, I got up obscenely early, had a shower, got myself ready and then went outside to sit in the common patio area to read. I stayed there for a few hours til Breakfast was available and then got myself a coffee. Isaac joined me shortly thereafter. We packed up our stuff and wandered the garden district a bit. Afterwards, we had lunch at a great little restaurant called “Mayas”. I was still feeling quite sick, so I only had a salad (which was AMAZING). We grabbed our things from the hostel and then made our way to our next destination, The Cotton Exchange Hotel, which was incredibly swanky and lovely. We dropped off our bags, as we were a bit early for our check in, and did a nice long walk of the French Quarter.
A beautiful home we passed on our walk
Remenants of Mardi Gras
After the walk, we went back to the hotel to rest before dinner and a Haunted Walk Tour. The tour was really interesting and I got some really neat Orb pictures of a couple of the haunted spots. What are orb pictures? The idea is that spirits can be captured on film in the shape of orbs. Some cases, it’s just dust orbs, but I’m fairly certain that my shots were real. There was no reflective surfaces, no dust, and no other explanation. Neat! The one spot that I got the most orbs? Definitely The Lalaurie House.
A nice clear Orb!
The Lalaurie House. Three orbs in this one
After the tour we went to Frenchmen St. in search of drinks and music! We ended up at The Spotted Cat and caught a few songs by a group called (I think) New Orleans Moonshiners. They were AMAZING and we had a great time, despite the fact that I felt awful and wanted to collapse where I stood. I think the Vodka Crans I was drinking were antibacterial or something. Maybe. I have a quick clip of their performance that I’ll try to remember to add later.
The Moonshiners at The Spotted Cat
Isaac and I at The Spotted Cat. It's not just the picture that's fuzzy, it was me too. Yay sinus infections.
Day 3: Didn’t sleep at all. Again. Finally got up at 8 or so to a text message from my friend Sarah, asking me if I had heard anything about a guy we went to college with. I asked her why, and that’s how I found out about the Tsunami and earthquake in Japan. (The guy, Dan, is fine btw.) Spent most of the morning following the news until Isaac got up. Once ready and packed, we had an ok lunch at Huck Finn’s and then hung out at the River front for a while. We then went back to the Garden District for our walking tour of the area.
My first Po-Boy
The River Front
We stopped at an amazing little café called “Still Perkin” where I had the BEST iced chai latte I’ve ever had in my life. I miss it. I want one right now. SO GOOD. The tour was AMAZING. Our guide, John, was perfect and I feel like I learned SO MUCH. Here’s a few pictures from the tour:
Isaac at Lafayette Cemetery
A beautiful home in the Garden District that just happens to be owned by Sandra Bullock
A pretty typical NO Garden District house. LOVE the iron work.
After our tour, we went to Cheesecake for dinner/lunch/snack. I had the most incredible crab cakes, and prayed for my cold to go away. I was feeling run down, exhausted and so sick.
After all of that, we picked up our bags and made our way to our next destination, The Marquette House hostel. I was not impressed. This is not the place for those seeking anything above a bed to sleep in. Seeing as how that’s all I really needed, I went with it. At this point, I was pretty certain my cold was actually a sinus infection. Sigh. Completely run down and done, we stayed in and just rested. I met a lovely girl from Denmark by the name of Phillipa (she was one of my 8 roommates). She and I chatted a bit and then I went to bed, in my clothes, at 9pm. I am still afeared of potential bed bugs, but Pat promises me he doesn’t think I brought anything home.
Day 4: I SLEPT. Thank the gods, I finally slept. Exhaustion and Nyquil saved the day. We checked out of the hostel and then went back to Still Perkin. We were both stressed, as everywhere seemed to be booked. We had no idea where we were going to be able to stay the night. At the café, I met a wonderful lady by the name of Rose (she served me). She and I chatted for a bit while she made my Chicory Latte (which I really enjoyed, btw). Once she found out that we didn’t have room plans for that night, she called her girlfriend, Michelle, who offered us a place to stay for the night! We exchanged numbers, and then Isaac and I were off to catch the St. Patrick’s Day parade. It was a mini Mardi Gras for me, and despite feeling like death, I had a good time and collected some beads without having to flash the girls.
Our breakfast at Still Perkin'
St. Patty's Day Parade
Isaac and I collecting beads
I was completely fascinated with this parade. Apparently it’s tradition to throw Cabbage, Potatoes and Carrots, as well as the beads and knickknacks. I’m talking whole freakin’ heads of cabbage! It was a bit scary at times, but hilarious.
After the parade, we walked down to Juan’s Flying Burrito for an amazing lunch of burritos. We then walked the city for hours. We spent some time in our favourite hang out, the park near Jackson st. After some rest, we went to get our luggage from the Hostel and then went to meet the lovely Michelle!
The park near Jackson St.
Michelle’s apartment is right in the heart of the French Quarter and was absolutely lovely. It was such a home-away-from-home. We bonded immediately over a love of Roller Derby (she’s in the league there, so awesome!) and our furbabies (her two cats, Sam and Homer, were extremely welcoming). She was also sick, so we shared cold meds and talked for a while before she left for dinner with friends. I had the best shower of my life. Right when we were about to head out, Michelle and Rose came in and told us that Rose had been attacked on her way over! I couldn’t imagine anyone who would want to hurt such an amazing woman, but I suppose hate crimes have absolutely no sense or rational behind them. Isaac and I went out to dinner, but I was so sick that I couldn’t eat much at all. Arriving back at Michelle’s apartment, I was just done. I sent Isaac out to have a good time on his own, did some reading and then crashed. Unfortunately, not even Nyquil could help and I was up all night absolutely miserable.
Day 5. Several showers in the morning to clear our my sinuses, I called Pat and nearly cried. I was so tired, so sick and so ready to come home. I read for a while, bummed around online until Isaac got up. I then took a short nap, had another shower, and off we went to lunch. I realized then that my camera was broken. It wouldn’t stay on for more than a second or two. Sigh. It was nearly impossible to find a place on Sunday that was open and didn’t have a line out into the street. We finally settled on a place near Café du monde and tried Alligator for the first time (actually really tasty! I’d have it again). Still no appetite. We then went to the Voodoo Museum, which was really interesting but underwhelming.
We went back to the apartment, packed up and then went to Pink Berry for a treat. Dear Canada, please bring us Pink Berry. The US has to share. This is too good for me not to have it again.
There, a girl behind me told me I had the most beautiful eyes she’s ever seen. I needed that little bit of love, and it made my day. After Pink Berry, we went to our last destination, the Pelham hotel. We rested there a bit and then went out to see Michelle at the bar she works at. We had a drink and chatted a while before handing her back her keys and thanking her for her amazing generosity. After drinks, we went to http://www.snugjazz.com/site/ Snug Harbor hoping for Jazz and food. Unfortunately there was no band, but I did have THE BEST baked potato of my life. It was mind-shatteringly good. I can’t even explain. Awesome.
Snug Harbour's floating chair art
The baked potato of the gods
We then returned to the hotel, hung out a bit and then crashed for the night.
Day 6. I slept! YAY! We packed up, checked out and walked down to the bus stop for the airport. Arriving at the airport later than expected, Isaac had to run to catch his flight so I went to the airport café and had some beignets and a café au lait finally. SO GOOD. After eating, I checked in and hung out at my gate for a bit, only to hear that my flight to Houston has been delayed an hour due to a storm. Ruh-oh. You see, I had very tight connections, all within an hour of landing. The fine gentleman at the gate assured me I’d be fine, so I kept to the plan.
Everything went great for my other connections until I arrived in Chicago, having missed my flight by about 15 minutes. Luckily, there was another flight to Ottawa an hour and a half later. I grabbed some food that I didn’t really eat (still no appetite) and hunkered down at the gate with some Angry Birds for the next while, after being assured that my baggage would be rerouted with no issues.
Caught my flight, and arrived in Ottawa later than anticipated. I discovered shortly thereafter that my bags didn’t make it with me. Sigh. So, I filed a complaint and Pat took me home. Three days later, my bags arrived.
It was an exciting trip, and I totally fell in love with the city, but I wish I had been healthy for it. One day, I’d like to go back.
Since being back, there’s been some estate stuff to take care of , a visit to the doctor’s office (Turns out I had a sinus infection that spread to my ears, woo!), a trip to the pharmacy and lots of Dragon Age 2. I’ll update on regular life stuff tomorrow or the next day. <3