Our first stop after leaving Florida was New Orleans. Prior to our arrival, the only things I had known about the city had to do with Hurricane Katrina and Mardi Gras. I quickly learned that New Orleans is a city with a soul. During our three days there we parked in the beautiful garden district. This area was relatively protected from the hurricane and was full of gracious old houses. We hopped on our bikes and made our way downtown stopping at any shops that looked interesting. We found a number of design shops that were fun to dream in. One particularly fun moment was when we were sitting in the grass looking out at the Mississippi river while two guys played the banjo behind us.
We spent our last day in the “City Park”. It is a large park just north of the city with an art museum and gardens everywhere. We pretended to be sculpture art critiques in the afternoon then had a nice picnic nearby. The park was full of people all day. We enjoyed watching skaters, family reunions, and kids playing all around us over dinner at a picnic table.
Food was wonderful here. We ate a a po-boy sandwich shop and a homemade noodle shop. There certainly were many more places that we could have gone to but to keep costs down we made food in the van.
Throughout this trip, Taylor and I have been together almost 24/7. This has gone far better than I had expected. In New Orleans however, it became a little much for me and I had to go out and take a bike ride by myself. At this point we were parked at the zoo enjoying the free internet. I biked around the zoo hoping to see some animals through the fence. While I didn’t see any elephants, I did find a private horse barn and they welcomed me in to take a look around and pet the horses. Being with the animals was calming. While it’s a wonderful gift to have so much time together, it’s also important to take intentional time apart.