That Nolia Clap: Day 5

March 2010.

The next day it was back to my smallish restaurant with the old school cling clang register.

Along the way is one of my favourite buildings in New Orleans - the Whitney National Bank Headquarters. Actually, I enjoyed all of the Whitney Banks as I drove around and realized that every branch has one of these amazing clocks!

This morning would also include being thrown out of a parking garage. Yes, you read that right.

I woke up early so I could check out the Lower Ninth Ward of New Orleans.

I particularly wanted to see the Lower Ninth as this area was portrayed by the media as being the hardest hit by Katrina. Five years after Katrina, it wasn't anything memorable for me - it just looked like the East Side of Detroit...

The Ninth Ward actually had a lot less abandoned houses and more houses in good repair than I imagined.

Nearby, there were also some of those houses Brad Pitt is endorsing (Brad Pitt is involved with a foundation, trying to build green, cheap houses in the Lower Ninth Ward area)...

Instead of gawking at the Lower Ninth decay, I found myself more enamored & interested in the nearby shotgun houses.

Shotgun houses were mostly constructed between the Civil War (1861-1865) and the 1920s - where after they declined in construction as they became a symbol of poverty. The houses were very popular in the Southern United States and they say that the percentage of shotgun houses in New Orleans is still 10%.

There's a couple explanations of the Shotgun name: one is that the houses are so short, that a shotgun blast at the front doorway, would have bullet fragments go through the back wall & another explanation is that the name was lost in translation when Africans were trying to refer to their to-guns houses back home.

Many of these houses decayed after the 1920s and many were bulldozed in attempts to renew urban areas. There are areas where they are now being appreciated and some are seeing renovation instead of demolition.

By the way, Elvis was born in a shotgun houses. It still stands in Tupelo, Mississippi.

After dropping off the rental car and walking back to the hotel, GW and I went out for some lunch.

...and now a little story: I was quite worried about crossing into America for the first time by airplane. I know how prickish and hellacious the land border guards can be, but I've heard so much more about airport border guards. Well anyway, I get to Toronto and approach my border guard, a black woman in her 50s, who asks where I'm going. I nervously tell her that I'm going to New Orleans and she inspects my passport - then excitedly replies, "Oh, have you been before? New Orleans is amazing! You need to make sure you have yourself a Hurricane & a Hand Grenade when you're down there...strong drinks! Have fun!"

...and with that I was through customs. I think I was listening to people's stories about airport border guards, who have never had to put up with the berating and degradation of land crossings on the regular.

So yeah, when I was in New Orleans, I had to make sure to get a Hurricane & a Hand Grenade for that amazing border guard. That led us to this lunch spot that GW knows for its Hurricanes.

(If you're wondering, the drink was really fruity & tasty, but also very weak. I'm thinking we should have went and tried Hurricanes at some dive versus the touristy popular location.)

After lunch we caught a cab over to Tulane University for some Tulane Wave Baseball.

While this picture may not show it, it was sunny and actually hot this day. We originally sat behind first base, but the sun was beating down directly & roasting us - it was funny to think of the friends back home in Newfoundland getting blasted with wet snow at a time where I was thirstier than a camel in the Sahara.

Anyway, the baseball game was sort of boring, but it was a good day to relax and take 'er easy. There was some talent nearby and the beer was cold - good enough for me.

Afterward I asked GW to walk through Tulane's campus so we could check it out.

While there was some Soviet Bloc style dorms, there were also some attractive buildings. It wasn't the most impressive array of buildings, but I'd probably give it a 6.5 campus rating.

Maybe I was distracted by the intriguing idea of attending Tulane after seeing so many trees covered in beads...

GW had the amazing idea in taking the streetcar back to the hotel.

It was only $2 and it was almost as fast as the taxi. In addition, the seats were these old wooden seats; with hinges where you could swing the back and face either way.

I loved it.

Another bonus of taking the streetcar route was all of the impressive mansions we passed during out 15 minute ride back downtown.

I think I told GW how awesome & how great an idea this was, about 10 times.

My favourite house of the bunch...

Even the Chase Bank was nice!

With our last night in New Orleans we would go to Bourbon Street one last time. We would try the Hand Grenades and they were tastier and stronger. I would grow amused with walking into a bar, just to buy a drink and walking right back out. The same amusement arose with a tiny counter where you could buy frozen daiquiris and simply turn around to drink on Bourbon Street.

GW would have another most excellent idea of standing below one of the porches were people were throwing beads. The two of us relaxed & sipped our drinks as girls would go by and were encouraged to some show breastices. In about 20 minutes, 4 girls obliged...with one really nice set on a mediocre girl & one mediocre girl with super fantastic titties.

That's the kind of recap you want to read. I'm sorry I'm a jackass and didn't think of taking out my camera for booberpictures.

I'm losing my touch with age.

Onto Day 6.

New Orleans 2010

Day 1:
Arrival, Dixie Brewery, Go Cups.

Day 2:
Touristy Jazz, Algiers, My First Ever NBA Basketball Game.
Day 3:
Cemeteries & the World's Longest Bridge.

Day 4:
Six Flags.
Lighthouses, Houses on Stilts and Hockey Where You Wouldn't Expect it.

Day 5:
The Ninth Ward, Tulane Baseball and Wooden Streetcars.

Day 6:
A Charlotte Stopover.


1 - New Orleans Architectural Styles

2 - Ninth Ward of New Orleans - Wikipedia

3 - Shotgun House - Wikipedia

Go Back to the Main Page of this Website.