Sunday, December 8, 2019

A Quick Tour Of New Orleans

The well known above ground cemeteries of New Orleans...less startling if you come visiting from Key West.
The story of how the Catholic diocese sells and re-sells graves is unusual and obviously must be unique to this uniquely corrupt north American city. 
In the photo above the plaque bolted to the side of the tomb lists the previous occupants who filled the grave and whose remains were removed to make way for new proprietors. Which is how these are the tombs that keep on yielding an income. Or the occupants might choose to pay extra for "perpetual care:"

 A woman and her dog found their last resting place together:
 Worth the $50  charge. Well worth it and they take dogs too. Doubly worth it.
Stories of the cemeteries:
 A quick buzz through the 1300 acres of city park.
 Three dueling neighbors out painting each others' brightly colored homes:
 Lovely streets:
The columns supporting the freeway are being painted to resemble a forest. Whimsy still has its place in this town:
The Hard Rock building which collapsed on Canal Street killing three workers, all of whom are entombed in the rubble including one body said to be covered by the red tarp visible in the picture below. A Honduran construction worker who tried to blow the whistle on the unsafe status of the building two days before the collapse was declared illegal and sent home to Honduras two weeks ago scuttling attempts to secure his testimony in the scandal. New Orleans at its' finest.
The French Quarter, below. France and Spain fought over New Orleans for decades and a fire destroyed the original French architecture of the Vieux Carre ( the "old quarter" in French) which the Spanish rebuilt in their own style. Thus "The Quarter" is Spanish in style and was only held by the French for a matter  of weeks after the Spanish ceded the territory for the last time in 1803 and Napoleon sold it on immediately to the United States to fund his European wars. Probably more than you needed to know.

A cliche but always delicious. Our tour guide pointed out Cafe Beignet as the better option. Next time we shall investigate. I also very much like chicory coffee which I find to be strong but not at all bitter.
I am not a huge fan of quaint horsepower in the modern world. I wonder how much they suffer to please passengers.
A statue of Pierre d'Iberville an explorer who created the mythical 18th century French presence in these parts.
One of three security guards on 24 hour watch at the crumbling former Charioty free hospital which served the poor of New Orleans and was completely refurbished after Hurricane Katrina but was left to languish by city leaders eager to make money off the location by destroying the hospital and creating housing in its place. The process of self destruction has taken 20 years and the formerly fully operational hospital for the poor is now ready to be transformed into housing. 

On the subject of the 2005  hurricane and subsequent flooding and massive loss of life the location of the ghastly refugee crowding at the stadium now totally rebuilt at vast expense is also a tour site. Waist  deep water flooded the base of the ramp in the picture below:
Canal Street patrially shut down by the Hard Rock collapse. Proudly described as the widest street in North America, formerly separating the post 1803 American Quarter on the left from the French speaking Creole Quarter on the right. Hence the local term of "neutral ground" for street medians.
 Seasonal Vespa!
 An idea copied in Key West, children painting utility boxes on the streets. Very nice too.

Piazza d'Italia which Rusty did not want to explore. All I caught as a passing glimpse of a very 1930s Italian style arch with marble clock face (At six in the morning. The clock keeps time). It's worth reading up on the place if you are interested in this city's inability to finish anything properly..!
The Warehouse and Business District, originally where the new American settlers landed and created their own neighborhood. I like it as it's totally not what you think of, if you think at all of New Orleans.

 French Market workers. Not everyone is on vacation in New Orleans, just like Key West:
 Dogs welcome is an easy way to lure us off the street for a drink. 
 And some people watching from floor level:

The Old Mint apparently has the distinction of being the only such Federal Building to have manufactured coin for both Federal and Confederate currencies. So there, always ambiguous is New Orleans. Now it's also a Jazz Museum, undoubtedly worth a visit.
My traveling hound. He is not fond of horses or mules pulling carriages and foot crowds overwhelm him too.
He was known as the Little Napoleon among other endearing nick names...and he had a home in New Orleans the sort of place I like to explore:
 On the list for a future visit.
 I dare not speculate what happened here:
Dog or horse?  A few street scenes taken as Rusty and i walked and my wife shopped the French Market.
I was hoping to come across Tuba Skinny but they had no events scheduled and were nowhere on the holiday streets of the city. Hope they stuffed their faces properly. I did find some amusing graffiti.
 Don't you sit on a trash can to make a phone call? He does...
 Lovely New Orleans.
Pretty busy tour of New Orleans, I'd say. Time for a nap!