New Orleans, Louisiana is one city that has been on my travel bucket list since I was in elementary school. My undying interest in the paranormal, magic, and the occult brought New Orleans across my path on many occasions. While my trip was short, only 12 hours in duration, I got a peek at what one NOLA resident dubbed, “The most unique place in the Universe”.
Stopping through New Orleans was an unexpected treat on my return to Seattle from Atlanta. Flights from NOLA to Seattle were cheaper than flights from Atlanta to Seattle. So I made plans to fly in to New Orleans at 8am and purchased a ticket to fly out at 9pm. I knew that with limited transportation and being a foreigner to the city, I wasn’t going to see much without help. My best friend called her dad, a recent New Orleans transplant, and he was happy to pick me up from the airport and take me to breakfast. We dined at the Ruby Slipper, a small chain that was established in the last 5 years. The vibe of the restaurant is simple and fun, and the food was exceptional. We chatted about the economic standing of the city and while gentrification was changing the city, the lack of established industries outside of tourism made it a tough place to live.
The energy and the architecture in the French Quarter is jaw dropping. The French colonial influence has been preserved, and the color palette of the city is a hue of pastels and earth tones. The energy itself is heavy, the weight of centuries of history with it’s original structures still in place. The ease upon which the living live alongside the dead, also accounts for a dynamic only seen in New Orleans. The world famous cemeteries lay alongside the highway and amongst neighborhoods as jewels and not hidden away as secrets. The city has an almost somber feeling.
After meeting up with a native that I went to college with, we went in search of authentic New Orleans cuisine. We landed at a place with an upscale vibe but southern cuisine called Copeland’s. The food was out of this world. We had Crawfish bread, Crawfish Etouffee, Crab Claws in butter sauce, Red Beans and Rice, and a grilled Catfish fillet. I left happy and full. After hanging out downtown It was time for me to return to the airport.
On my return visit I hope to tour the West Bank, 9th Ward, and Treme neighborhoods. The city is dark yet vibrant at the same time. Arriving at 8am allowed me to see the city slowly awaken. The stillness of morning was quickly replaced by the clicking and clacking of horseshoes and the music streaming out of the many establishments on Burborn street. My time in NOLA was incredibly short and this review doesn’t give it justice, but I am grateful to have gotten a taste of the most unique place in the universe.