Day 21 – A jazz cruise in New Orleans

• After waking up at dickety-dick o’clock by the air conditioner rumbling like a Harley (including unnecessary throttle blips), we figured there was no point going back to sleep anyway because we felt so gross on the 3rd world standard linen. In the optimistic hope that we avoid an incurable skin condition, we showered several times before departing well before the sun came up.

• I decided to fuel up (again, downside of V8 Vroom Vrooms) since we were like 3 hours ahead of schedule anyway. In classic Memphis fashion, we were begged for money at the bowser, then again at the traffic lights. Very classy area clearly. Still need to swing my mighty hammer of wrath by leaving a 1 star review for that dodgy hotel too. Note to self: condemn All Seasons, Macon Cove, Memphis on the internet before bed tonight ★☆☆☆☆

• As the sun came up, we were greeted by some beautiful countryside yet again. I’ll say this for this side of the US, they got plenty of fertile land and it’s growing heaps of green nature stuff on it. Trees, shrubs, grass, all sorts of flora. I know there’s a big desert in the middle like we’ve got (except ours doesn’t have Casino Land stuffed in there), but there’s heaps more useful green bits around the outside here. Pity they waste so much of it on corn.

• Once we’d put sufficient distance between us and the manky linen to feel safe from it’s stains, we pulled in to Waffle House. Despite the name, it is actually constructed with standard building materials which is less romantic but likely far more structurally sound. They do however serve waffles, so we got one. It was served in the typical flat horizonal position which in no way resembled a dwelling either so who knows what’s going on with this mob and their naming.

• The African American lady serving tickled my funny bone because she had her weave did, with the novelty plastic cowboy hat that makes up the Waffle House uniform perched precariously right up on top at a very jaunty angle. Also she had the drawliest drawl that ever drawled and I was at a total loss to understand most of what she was saying past the initial “y’all”. Erin translated luckily, and we exchanged money for waffles successfully.

• As we are wont to do, we took some random detours off the highway to check out things that sounded interesting. One town sounded like one in that song in the Simpsons monorail episode, so I made the executive decision to go and see if they had a monorail. It was the wrong town name, and they didn’t have a monorail besides, but they did have a laundromat so we took the opportunity to wash underpants. It was a very popular spot with all the local people greeting each other, and friendly with there operator of the place. Was actually a neat little community hub.

• The roads in and out of this small town(? I did not do a census to check population) were mowed for tens of miles continuously. I’m the first to say mow on bloke, but who the heck is doing all this mowing?? Lawn enthusiast of the decade.

• We carried on driving to roll in to New Orleans which is a total trip. The highways in are all raised on account of the place being a swamp, so for miles and miles you’re driving on a highway supported by concrete pylons. The amount of resources and work involved to install this highway had me flabbergasted. Then there’s the Great Wall of Louisiana which is 2 miles of concrete barrier to stop the place going underwater when a storm surge occurs. Why is the city still here lol? Clearly never played Civilization on anything beyond Chieftan 😎

• After dodgy hotels, this place is practically palatial. Guess how many pillows were on the bed? Five. And while still suffering from the typical US pillow deflation issue, they resemble pancakes more than crepes so on the pillow front we’re already miles ahead of the last week of hotels combined. Also the linen is so white it would make Pauline Hanson happy. Going to sleep well tonight!

• But first…. It’s a jazz cruise! We headed down early to check out the shops on the riverfront, and Erin suddenly got caught in the tractor beam of a dog boutique and was pulled inside. I don’t want to say too much in case he’s reading, but I think Boris might have a little something in the suitcase. He always brings us little presents, so it’s only fair.

• Stopped at Auntie Annes for a snack, but apparently they only sell pretzels?? No apple pie?? The food from Australia’s Auntie Ann is far superior 😉

• Boarded the jazz cruise and listened to a live band playing all manner of jazz songs, including a very smooth rendition of “Happy Birthday” for one lucky lady who was dobbed in as being the birthday girl. I have never heard so much trumpet and trombone in a happy birthday before.

• Cruise went for a couple of hours and she was fair cold, especially coming towards the end. Gets a bit blowy on the water and it was down in the 10-15°C range to start with. Could have whimped out and gone inside, but it was a nice view up top and the band was great so hung around to enjoy it.

• Final stop, a pub on the way back to the hotel for a late night dinner. Cajun chicken and Jambalaya, cause when in Rome!


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