Florida – the rest of the journey

I know it has been a while since I have written and for good cause, I was out enjoying my trip to Florida via New Orleans, Louisiana, where we flew in from.

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Now, you may be thinking why not just fly into Pensacola? The reason is simply not just the destination, but the journey. We enjoyed the drive and wanted to get a feel for what that part of the US looked like and what better way than to experiences a 4 hour drive to do so. Also our airline didn’t fly to Pensacola (maybe).

My writings have been absent since day four so I will do a brief recap of the rest of the trip, supply you with a few pics and move on to some other entries as I am getting way behind in my postings.

After spending several days with my wife, brother-in-law and his gf (she is really awesome btw) in a really nice resort experiencing the all-inclusive experience we decided to mosey to another location in another small city along the emerald-green waters that Florida is famous for for the duration of our time there.

We swam in the ocean, kayaked and even tried stand-up paddle-boarding. The later was almost achieved before I walked backwards off my board into the warm gulf waters. My brother-in-law and I did manage to trade watercraft  while we were in the gulf without incident. He originally had the paddle-board and I the kayak. It was funny! I didn’t even get eaten by a shark! I actually have a fear of becoming a tasty meat-snack for the beasts of teeth so am always a little leery of the ocean and its denizens.

On Friday we had one last home-made latte with my wife’s brother and headed back to New Orleans to spend out last remaining night in the Big Easy. The drive was long but nice. We took a different route back than the one we took to arrive to see some of the beach-front scenery this time. It was not all that impressive although the houses were. The size and grandeur that only the south could muster. The weather was maybe a little blustery so maybe that is why the beaches were empty.

After making it to our hotel for the night we decided to check out a little bit of the French Quarter, cuz if there is one place you check out when in NO it is the French Quarter. The city is old, compared to about everything on the West Coast so from that perspective this was going to be fun. We made our way via several freeway interchanges and finally were driving down the French Quarter! We found a parking spot miraculously at the end of a block about 15-20 feet from the end of the block. We checked it out for no parking signs etc…and were satisfied there were none. We locked up and went to see what all the hubbub was about.

As we made our way to Bourbon Street we could help but find it, it was where all the music cranked to 11 was. It was also where every block had a club very blatantly displaying the wares of some of the employees prominently in the doorways in the form of near-naked men with the skimpiest of underwear on. It was a bit of a shock and kind of funny all at the same time. I snapped a few pictures, not of the people in the doorways but of the streets filled with people. After my 3rd of 4th pic my wife very pointedly told me not to take any more pictures as it was making us out to be the tourists on the scene and we are ready to be robbed.

My wife had looked up and found a place we could see a live jazz band perform. As we waited in line we solicited by a gentleman working in the restaurant next door asking if we wanted drinks. The place where we were seeing the band perform did not sell drinks but allowed you to bring them in. Score! So we ordered two of their fruity red concoctions and waited for the line to start moving. Soon after our order we did start to move. I got nervous as we had already paid for the drinks and the entrance to the jazz hall (more like a room really) was fast approaching. When we were 3 people from the entryway our drinks arrived and we were shortly thereafter ushered into a 40×30 ft room with inches thick plaster over lathe that you could see because it was so old. It made me think who else had played in this very room?

The band ambled in and had six members; a tenor saxophone, a trumpet, a trombone, pianist, stand-up bass and drums. They played a 45 minute set and it was awesome. I love live music and although jazz is not normally something I listen to on my own, I was excited to see and hear the band play. Having said that, and I am sure I am going to catch some heat from jazz fans here but…it almost seemed a little gratuitous because on each band member had their own solo at the end of each song. I guess that is the allure to jazz fans. I was fine with it but a 45 minute set gave us only 6 or 7 songs. I would have liked to hear more unique songs than the extension of each currently played songs.

After the show we stopped by a shop and purchased a couple t-shirts and finally made our way back to our car and ultimately to our hotel.

Here are some pics we took of Bourbon Street.

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More to come…

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