To the left you'll see a snapshot from our trip to New Orleans. We were there for Southern Decadence over Labor Day Weekend. The picture is from the parade on Sunday. What a great time! (More pix at my Picasa site.)
We hadn't been back since Hurricane Katrina, and it was a relief to see that the French Quarter is mostly back to 'normal' (as normal as the French Quarter ever is...!) There were some damaged and even destroyed buildings, but they were few and far between. We spoke with our hosts at the B&B we stayed in -- they said that the majority of the Quarter had little to no damage. Their property had lost a few slate tiles, the attic vents had blown away, etc. No flooding or water damage.
As everyone knows, the rest of the city did not fare so well.... To the south and east of downtown, there are still large areas of the city that are in ruins. We didn't have a car so didn't venture out that way -- and I'm not so sure they need to have gawkers driving through their despair....
I did find out, just before we left for New Orleans, that you can volunteer your time on a short-term basis. One of the most organized groups is Habitat for Humanity. (My dislike of religious organizations is, in this case, outweighed by the good this group does for people in need. Also, since 1984, Jimmy Carter has been involved with the organization, raising my esteem for the group even more.)
If you're heading to New Orleans and will have a spare day to do some volunteer work in the area, check out this site for a list of ongoing projects in the New Orleans area and their daily need for additional volunteers. (As it was a holiday weekend, there were very few projects active that day, so we didn't get a chance to participate.)
Nightlife is, as usual, amazing in New Orleans. We ventured out to the Faubourg Marigny neighborhood on Friday evening for an excellent time at the Phoenix. They held a beer bust/street party outside the bar that ran until late into the night. We later ventured inside and upstairs to check out the rest of the bar.... Nothing like it in San Diego!
Rawhide and LaFitte's in Exile is where we spent the rest of the weekend -- except for a few crazy hours at Cat's Meow, the karaoke bar right on Bourbon Street. We had a great time, chatted with lots of other visitors to the city and enjoyed their three-for-one drink specials!!
While we were in New Orleans, our buddies R&H from Manchester were here in San Diego. They were on a whirlwind trip through CA and NV, but our timing was a bit off and they planned to be here in SD while we were partying in New Orleans. What bad luck! But, we made the most of the situation and Bill and I ventured up to Yosemite to meet up with them. We had a great time hanging out with them and seeing some of the sights in the park, but my complaint is that we only had the one day to spend with them. Still, it was wonderful to see them again! Favorite moment: sitting out on the patio at the Ahwahnee Hotel, drinking hefeweizens and watching the squirrels cavorting on the lawn.
Those pix haven't made it to Picasa yet -- I'm runnin' a bit behind on my photo-uploads, but I have good reason. A week or so before our New Orleans trip, I suffered a hard-drive crash on my Powerbook. It's up and running again thanks to the guys at Cry Wolf, but I am still dealing with the aftermath: most of my applications are gone, settings and preferences need to be reset -- and, worst of all, I hadn't copied my photos from iPhoto in a LONG time. If I were to go into detail about what I might never retrieve from the old drive, I might break down and cry right here...!
Don't mention "backups" to me right now. I thought I had everything backed up on my external drive. It seems, though, that I had the wrong settings in the program and there was only a partial backup being done each week -- NOT including any of my photos, music, etc. Aaargh!
OK, enough for now. Until next post (hopefully a bit more regularly than every month!), you can view the pix I've been posting at Picasa.
4 weeks ago