Of course, I am referring to your first time in New Orleans, when you first stepped into the Quarter and your senses came alive with an indescribable bevy of stimulus. The aromas, the music, the people, the river, the mules, the carriages, the artists, the performers, the architecture, the laughter and the southern hospitality. Have you ever been called “baby” so many times in one day? Now that you are an experienced New Orleanean traveler, what advice would you give to other “first timers”? Naturally you would refer them to all the classics, beignets and a café au lait, Frenchman street, streetcars, gumbo, a hurricane and the like, but would you remember to tell them the most important details that make their first time a pleasurable one? Things like, check the weather, often. Wear comfortable shoes, the sidewalks are a walking hazard for flats and a war zone for stilettos. Carry plenty of ones and fives, the performers are amazing and you may regret not tipping a future “I saw her when…”. She won’t remember it, but you surely will. Be prepared to walk, eat, drink, repeat. Plan a couple of hours on a good balcony or gallery to enjoy a favorite New Orleanean pastime, people watching. Take a tour to learn the difference between a gallery and a balcony. A licensed tour guide will enlighten you to the rich, diverse and eclectic past of the Vieux Carre’ that makes New Orleans and the French Quarter what it is today, a virtual melting pot of every part of the world, conveniently placed in a quaint port city, swathed by a crescent, providing a unique, quintessentially New Orleans experience you will not soon forget. And most importantly, don’t forget to wear protection … sun block and a hat of course. Enjoy!
The Lady Rose