Thursday, 15 October 2009 at 06:42
We walked New Orleans today – and sailed the Mississippi (ss ss pp iii and an M ?). Please refer to the photographic images to appear, as soon as I have eviscerated them from my cameras and phone.
It was hot – at 9am it was VERY hot as we strolled along the riverwalk, avoiding perambulate joggers, some of whom seemed to be americanly obese and below perambulate pace. I found I had a photographic competitor – usually it is other person waiting for me to angle myself on the floor and require specific cloud formation in order to snap the perfect photograph. This time it was him., How annoying.
We sailed across the Miss. only to hit a cloud burst, which faded as dramatically as it has arrived (attention seeker!). But unlike their Health Service, this boat was free at the point of departure. So no cash lost. Instead we walked the street of New Orleans, identifying plants and shrubs of “french” history & architecture still surviving amidst the tall concrete hotel and casino trees. And more statutes of the late laminated Louise Armstrong than you could shake a trumpet at.
We had a “poboy” each in a world famous “poboy” place – like any American diner seen on TV. Later we took a paddle steamer up river and looked at ships and levees and lots of brown muddy Miss. water. Then it poured, then it stopped pouring. All very suddenly. We ate some traditional NO fayre for tea (which seems to be mainly rice and meat), and then spent 3 hours listening and absorbing ourselves in the Preservation Hall Jazz Band. Age range from 21 to 91 – weights equally polarised. Moody, irresistibly foot-tapping and the best (a) piano player and (b) saxophonist in the known universe (after my wife and daughter of course, respectively).
New Orleans is a curates egg – good in parts, excellent in some, awaiting garbage collection and street washing in others. It is danger of being suffocated with the fluffy pillow of commerce and commercialism and (not to mention) smut and Subways.
Hoping for more than 3 hours sleep tonight for a change. Why can’t the USA be due south of the UK? Or the earth stop turning? I have indeterminate rhythms and beats in my head. This jazz thing really does get to your double bass strings.