For those of you who don’t know, I just spent my spring break in New Orleans, LA enjoying Bourbon Street and doing local service projects. I went with a group of 39 people from the WSU Center for Civic Engagement, most of whom I did not know entering the trip. We spent 5 days and 5 nights in the French Quarter and witnessed everything from the still-damaged Lower 9th Ward, to a St. Patrick’s Day Parade, to a beach in Mississippi, to the crazy nightlife on Bourbon Street.
If only this blog entry could do the trip justice…It was undoubtedly the best trip of my life, and I am already missing the people, parties, weather, food and general culture that we encountered down there. Honestly, if anyone has not gotten the chance to experience New Orleans yet, I highly recommend spending a few days down there. (Upcoming: New Orleans Jazz Fest – look it up!) Here is my recap of the trip:
Sunday, March 13, 2011:
Travel day! Needless to say, everyone is super excited at this point. We all break up into cars outside the CUB around 9 in the morning. I ride to the Spokane Airport with trip leader Charlie Snyder, and a fellow student, Reynisha. We got about 20 minutes outside of Pullman when Charlie suddenly pulls off to the shoulder and yells, “Oh, SHIT!” He had made a small oversight; forgetting the plane tickets! So, we sped back, grabbed the tickets, and laughed at the beginning of what turned out to be an indicator of the random, crazy, dysfunctional fun we were about to have.
I got to know Charlie better and learned that he attended DVC (local community college from my hometown!), which was awesome! And when we finally got to the airport and got everything rolling, the real crazy fun began. We took the ride to Las Vegas, where we had a couple hours layover in the airport. Everyone got drinks and stretched our legs, including a small group of us “exploring” what the airport had to offer (okay, so we just rode the little tram back and forth…grand total travel time: 10 minutes!). Anyway, a few of us on the plane from Vegas to New Orleans decided to start the festivities early and ordered rum and cokes, or wine, or whatever else sounded good at the time. Remember that myth about how altitude affects drunkenness? I believe we proved it was true!
When we finally landed later that night in New Orleans, we met up with the Seattle group and took the shuttles to the Holiday Inn on the French Quarter. Bryan, Rafa and I checked in to room 1426 (where alllllll the magic began last week), claimed our beds, and hit the French Quarter for just a couple hours to check it out. We were immediately in love with the warm weather and kind people. Even the homeless people were nice. If you said you didn’t have any change, you got an arm around your shoulder, a “God Bless You,” and probably a short chat and a few laughs. To end the night, a group of us went to Daisy Duke’s, a local diner that had 24-hour service and delicious food that would become the staple of late-night dining.
That’s it for Day 1. Please check out all the pictures I posted on Facebook, and feel free to ask me any questions (trust me, I would love to talk about this trip more)! Coming tomorrow: Monday, March 14, 2011 – the most…memorable…day of the trip.