Wednesday 22 June 2011

Dixieland Part 3.........

On the morning of day four of our holiday found us on a city tour with an amusing guide called Carol who was originally from County Cork in Ireland but had lived in N'awlins for many years.   She told us many interesting facts on our way to the first stop which was the St. Louis Cemetary Number Three,

Click on photos to biggify

where the funeral scene in the James Bond film 'Live & Let Die' was filmed.   There are some magnificent mausoleums in the cemetary.

Carol told us that when a body is interred in one it cannot be opened for a year and day, after which time it is opened and the contents of the last coffin are emptied at the back of the mausoleum and another body can then be interred.  It's unfortunate if a member of the family dies before the year and a day is up because they have to be buried elswhere!    There is a statue of Mother Theresa there too.

Another of our stops was at City Park where we walked round the Bestoff Sculpture Garden with its fantastic collection of modern and contemporary sculpture, presented in an exquisite natural setting.  I took photos of some of the exhibits and the legends which I've put in the slide show below.

After a quick lunch we were off of another trip, this time to Oak Alley Plantation.   The story of Oak Alley begins with the trees.   Sometime in the early 1700's, a settler built a small house on the site of the present mansion.  It was he who planted the twenty-eight live oak trees in two well-spaced rows, reaching from his house to the Mississippi River. 

In 1839, Jacques Telephore Roman, a wealthy Creole sugar planter, built the present mansion for his young wife - a bride's dream home!

The house was just beautiful and pefectly preserved and the grounds are magnificent too.

After the tour of the house we enjoyed a cup of Oak Alley's famous Mint Julep whilst walking back to the coach.    Before boarding the coach for the journey back to the hotel Alice suggested we walk up the levee to see just how high the Mississippi had risen.

As you can see the river wasn't too far away from the top of the levee which was worrying as the plantation was about 15 foot below the level of the river!

Apparently the trees in the foreground are usually on dry land, another indication of just how swollen the Mississippi was at that time.

We arrived back at the hotel with just enough time to shower and change before going out to eat at the Bon Ton Cafe, apparently it is the oldest Cajun Restaurant in New Orleans.   

It is one of the more expensive restaurants but the food was superb.  Here's what we enjoyed

Red Fish Bon Ton with a Crawfish Sauce
Parsley Buttered Potatoes
Creamed Cauliflower

Bread Pudding with Whisky Sauce

All washed down with a lovely bottle of Pinot Grigio.   If you'd like to see what else was on offer you can see the full dinner menu here.  If you're ever in New Orleans I can thoroughly recommend the Bon Ton!

After dinner we headed down to the famous Bourbon Street for a couple of drinks and to listen to the fabulous jazz bands playing in the vast array of bars.   

This colourful character persuaded us to go in the The Saloon


Where we had a great night listening to Benny Turner Blues

and as they were excellent we're glad he did!

We would have loved to have stayed on Bourbon Street until the early hours but we had to be up early the following morning for a brunch date, a swamp tour and a walking tour around the French Quarter, which I hope you'll join me for in Dixieland Part 4 coming soon.
Read Dixieland Part 1 here.
Read Dixieland Part 2 here.


Ash :) said...

looks like you had an amazing time!!!! :D

Commander Zaius said...

Can't wait to see Dixeland 4!

Valerie said...

That's an interesting piece about the burial place. It captured my warped imagination as I thought about bodies being left for a year and then removed.
Loved the colourful character. I don't think I'd argue with him for long.
Great pics, Pearl.

Ron said...

Well, as you know, I love visiting cemeteries, so I REALLY enjoyed those first two photos and hearing about the burial procedure - fascinating!

And I LOVED the statue of Mother Theresa. What an amazing woman she was!

Very cool shots of Bourbon Street. And the one of MWM and the colorful character is AWESOME. Love those huge beads!!

Thanks so much for sharing part 3 of Dixieland, m'dear! I'm thoroughly enjoying these posts because I've never been there myself, but I have always heard what a great place it is!

Have a great day!


Anonymous said...

Your tour of Dixieland is just wonderful. Bourbon street is one of a kind I tell ya. Just loved these. Mahalo.

Akelamalu said...

We certainly did Ash!

Next week hopefully Beach :)

I found that really interesting about the burial too Valerie. Wouldn't have wanted to be the one that emptied the coffin!

So glad you enjoyed all the photos Ron. That character outside the bar had a different costume on each night, and each one was more elaborate than the last!

I'm please you enjoyed my account and photos of Bourbon Street Thom, it certainly is one of a kind. ;)

Empress Bee (of the high sea) said...

ah bourbon street! such a place! ha ha ha did you see the transvestite show. they are amazing, i thought they were women but they weren't. very beautiful!

smiles, bee

secret agent woman said...

It's been a long, long time since I've been in hat part of the country, but spent part of my growing up years in Mississppi with visits to New Orleans.

Akelamalu said...

We didn't the transvestite show Bee but we did see a lot of women hawking the:0

We've waited a long time to visit New Orleans and it was so worth the wait SAW!

Jan said...

Glad I visited you today - your photos bring back happy memories of our trip to NOLA.

katie eggeman said...

Your pictures are fantastic. I especially liked the art slide show.

Akelamalu said...

I'm glad this brought back happy memories for you Jan :)

Thanks Bankerchick I'm so pleased you enjoyed them. x

Julia Phillips Smith said...

Wow - good thing that levee was holding! Another magnificent trip compliments of you, Akelamalu. Your dinner at the Bon Ton Cafe sounds divine, and the jazz - what a slice of heaven.

Linda said...

As someone who loves to spend times in fascinating cemeteries, I would totally enjoy poking around some of the ones in New Orleans one of these days!

Such a wonderful trip you got to go on! Now you and MWM need to make a trip to the Northeast so I can meet you somewhere along the line! We've got a lot of nice stuff up here, too!

Akelamalu said...

Yes the levees were under a lot of pressure for sure Julia! Glad you enjoyed hearing about our trip.

Oh you would have so loved that cemetary Linda, I hope you get to see it some time. We really want to come to your part of the world but our next trip(in the planning) will be to the West Coast we're thinking.

Travis Cody said...

I haven't had much interest in Louisiana as a tourist destination, but I think I'd go just to see Oak Alley Plantation. It always fascinates me when I see it used in movies.

CrystalChick said...

I would enjoy walking around the cemeteries of New Orleans.
What a wild looking guy with the baubles and beads!
Interesting places to visit there, that's for sure!
Glad you enjoyed the trip and are sharing some photos.

Akelamalu said...

The history of the Big House at Oak Alley Plantation was fascinating Trav and it has been preserved perfectly.

Reading the monuments in the cemetary was very interesting Crystal Chick, I'm sure you would love it.

Mimi Lenox said...

You two know how to have a good time. The pic of you in front of the trees is wonderful! I hope you are framing these.

I love mansion tours. Was there any place you weren't allowed to take pictures?