One of the best things about working with my best friend Cheryl (aside from seeing her smiley face every day) is getting to go on business trips together! About a month ago we attended the PMA Fresh Summit in New Orleans. It was the first time either of us had visited the Big Easy, so we were pretty much freaking out the week beforehand! The first night there we were so zonked from traveling all day that we just checked into our hotel room and grabbed some pizza for dinner. Our room was pretty deluxe with a kitchen and french doors that opened to the pool.
We were rested and ready to take on Saturday, which is when all the fun really happened...
After walking the trade show floor and visiting with a couple of clients during the day, we were able to sneak off and have some fun. We knew we first wanted to check out Bourbon Street, so we set off to walk through the town and find a place for dinner. If you haven't been to New Orleans, you might share the same assumption that Cheryl and I made, that Bourbon Street would be this lovely place filled with shops and fancy bourbon tasting rooms. Wrong. We were so incredibly wrong... as we made our way down the never ending street of filth and a bouquet of bodily function aromas, I realized I could die happy if I never had to set foot on Bourbon Street again. Literally and figuratively, it was the dirtiest place I have ever been. The entire street was lined with strip clubs and bars that only serve a rainbow variety of frozen drinks and cheap beer in mugs that are literally the size of my head. I took one picture of Bourbon Street and I think it sums it up pretty nicely. It's safe to assume that the liquid along the street there is urine, since it certainly smelled like it.
We finallllly made it to the end of Bourbon Street to a much more fun, artsy neighborhood and the evening from there on out was a total blast. One of those nights and my bestie and I will re-live over and over again! For anyone planning to travel to New Orleans, Frenchman Street is the place to be. It's where the locals go, and it's the street is lined with jazz bars, restaurants, antique and art shops, and a little alleyway where they host art fairs almost every night of the week!
We found a place to meet for cocktails and listen to jazz music, and while we were walking there we passed by a tattoo parlor. I'm not sure what came over me... maybe it was the name of the parlor, "Electric Ladyland Tattoo", or maybe it was all of the live music and art that intoxicated me, made me feel adventurous, and made me suddenly decide to get my very first tattoo! Here is pretty much how it went:
Me: "Let's go in - I should get a tattoo"
Cheryl: "Haha... no."
Me: "Seriously - let's go in... I'm gonna do it!"
Cheryl: "Don't play with my emotions!"
Me: "I'm dead serious... and I'm getting a tattoo."
Thank goodness Cheryl was there - she was perfect to balance out my impulsivity and make sure the lettering style and placement was perfect. She wasn't afraid to tell the tattoo artist "No" and "try again", lol.
In the end, I really LOVE my little tattoo and it was such a fun experience! It will forever be a reminder to me to leap... in small moments like this one that make for fun stories to share, and it big moments when life needs a little shaking up.
After the excitement of that Saturday night, Cheryl and I enjoyed the rest of our time in New Orleans by walking around the city...I loved how the street corners are marked by these old tiles laid into the cement...We made the obligatory trip to Cafe du Monde for a beignet and cafe au lait breakfast followed by a good ol' sugar coma nap back at the hotel.We also had a steamboat tour of the Mississippi River!
I'll finish up our trip with the details of visiting Lafayette Cemetery #1 and the Garden District... there are just too many pretty pictures to tack onto this post!