Falling in love with a trumpet player…

(Warning – photo heavy post!)

IT’S NEW ORLEANS Y’ALL!

I’d always wanted to go to New Orleans. For a long time. I’d imagined wandering up and down the streets listening to music, eating amazing food and soaking up the quirky atmosphere of one of the South’s most liberal cities. I envisioned it as a vibrant, music filled, open-minded anomaly in an otherwise very Republican and conservative part of America. New Orleans has it’s problems for sure but it certainly had a different vibe to anywhere else I have been so far this trip… AND I LOVED IT!

I spent my time there with the incredibly lovely Paul and Anna who were themselves only really passing through, albeit for a few months, before heading up to Tuscon and then Alaska to run bike tours! Ah ha, I hear you say, just the type of people I should be hanging out with! And yes, you’d be right! Not only did they very kindly offer to host me despite the fact that in less than a week they were moving house but Paul also helped me totally clean up my bike and retune the breaks and gears. What was rather hectic timing for them worked out to be perfect timing for me because as luck would have it New Orleans was in the lead up to Mardi Gras so there was a great carnival buzz around town.

My first day however was, unfortunately, another wet one. After heading out for a very Southern breakfast of Shrimp & Grits (so yummy!) with Paul & Anna I took a wander round the French Quarter in the rain. It was nice enough but I have to admit I was feeling a bit disappointed. I suppose everywhere looks kind of rubbish in the rain (I guess as a Brit I should know!) but on the plus side I did get to sample my first key lime pie in this cute cafe:

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Very cute tables but incredibly uncomfortable chairs unless your behind is the size of a postage stamp and see that annoying metal bar around the top of the table… well I can confirm it makes writing post cards really difficult!

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So many cakes! Thank goodness I’m on a bike tour!

Things continued to get better that evening as Paul and I went to watch the New Orleans Pelicans play the “someone” Thunders! I can now say, should I ever be asked, I am a Pelicans fan!

IMG_0451Sadly the Pelicans did not win (perhaps I won’t be a pelicans fan after all!) but it was pretty close and quite exciting. I like basketball – there’s always lots going on and aside from anything else I’m just impressed at how tall the players are!! I might adopt it as my American sport seeing as I not only have zero idea of how an American football game works but am also not sure I have the patience to sit through all 4 hours of it and baseball is essentially a big game of rounders right….!!! I can play that at Goring gap!!

The next day, thank goodness, was sunny! After a bike clean up with Paul I headed back into town with my camera hoping to see some music and boy did I strike gold! My opinion of the French Quarter changed instantly and not only did I have a great time wandering around the now beautiful streets but… yes… I fell in love…

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Meet my future husband. (God I hope that some bizarre chain of events doesn’t lead this poor guy to the blog as it would be sooo creepy!!!!!! Just in case, I’m sorry trumpet player… I didn’t stalk you… much… I love you… really… yeah)

So stalking aside the french quarter also bough this amazement into my life:

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Looks like an average yellow toy truck right…

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WRONG!!!! IT’S THE BEST STREET TRANSFORMERS OUTFIT IN THE HISTORY OF HUMANITY!!!!!! I so so wish I’d filmed this as he even zoomed (yes zoomed) around in car form before leaping up and making some poor kid cry! Unfortunately for him I’d given so much money to the band with my trumpet player in I just took a photo and sheepishly left – sorry Bumblebee!

My low photo taking track record promptly went out of the window that day and I went a bit crazy with my camera. That would be fine other than that I now can’t decide which ones to leave out so I’ve given up and am just going to include loads, many of which are essentially the same! Sorry in advance! Here is New Orleans:

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I wish I’d moved so that bike was on the right… I was being lazy!

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This guy thought he was a bit of dude but he is wearing a leather jacket and killing it on the clarinet so he’s not all that wrong I suppose!

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He’ll never be as much of a dude as this guy though! He got us all singing along… something about finding our swing. I told him my Dad had made me and my sisters one at the bottom of our garden when I was 12 but I had no idea what had happened to it.

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This is from the rainy day but I snuck it in as I thought it was cool!

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The Mardi Gras decorations were everywhere!

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What could make my day better… a piano on wheels being played in the middle of the street! Brighton station tried to do this over the summer but I suspect it just got graffitied!

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Yes he has a nose ring like an award winning bull and yes he is playing a stick. Great chap! My only gripe is the white thermals/shorts combo!

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Clear skies and no rain! Yippee! What a difference a day makes as Dinah Washington said.

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Busted! My candid photography needs some work! How much do you want to know what they are saying!

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Busted again! By the most chilled out Sousaphone player on the planet (yes that is what it’s called – google it! I had to!).

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Did it! The key is to stand so you’re hidden by their instruments and wait for the man who loves red to look away!

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The lack of symmetry annoys me here but I had been faffing around taking a photo of a door (below) and had gotten left behind so this had to do, I name it “man walking past three red doors”. Inspired I know.

 

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I’m not sure the door photo was worth it… although Mum will like the colour!

 

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Royal Street- there’s lots of cool art and antiques stores along here. Lot’s I wanted to buy, nothing I could afford.

 

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St. Louis Cathedral

 

So seeing as I was having such a great time taking photos and I still hadn’t worked up the courage to talk to my trumpet player, Paul and Anna said I could stay an extra night, yay! Their gorgeous friend Steph also arrived that evening, visiting for the long weekend, and we had a fab time together the next day wandering around town.

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Anna, Steph and Paul chilling out by the river which I realise you can’t see but it is behind me I promise! Note the “street car” in the background. They run throughout the city and I thought they were pretty cool. I appreciate they are just trams and hence not exactly groundbreaking but they look nice don’t you think!

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Wandering through the French Market.

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Ahh such amazing girls!

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This is what bike touring is about… meeting amazing people like these three

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Oysters, yum yum yum! No favouritism here either with only Paul and I in focus… the waiter didn’t quite get my camera!

That evening we headed out to catch one of the early Mardi Gras parades. Again, sorry for lots of pics, I couldn’t help it!

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Great costume but I’m not sure her heart is really in it!

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They ran out of sparkly socks for the girl on the end… she got a knee brace instead

 

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Busted again!!!!

 

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Very sparkly! I think I had a pink head band like that in our dressing up box when I was about 8! Maybe it’s time to find it…

 

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I was so desperate to catch some beads!! Of course I didn’t… but Anna very kindly gave me some of hers!

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This little girl was my favourite! I think she was ready to go home! To be fair to her we were stood pretty near the end point and she’s probably been twirling her batons for a few hours!

So New Orleans thanks for a ball! I’ll certainly try and come back one day! You have been my favourite city so far without a doubt and should any handsome trumpet players find themselves reading this… you know where I am!

 

 

 

3 thoughts on “Falling in love with a trumpet player…

  1. I love this post! Imagining the untold amounts of pure glee at the yellow truck turning into a man really made me laugh! Absolutely loving the pics and the blogs, so awesome to be able to find out what you’re up to! Lots and lots of love xxxxxxxxxx

    Like

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