Where did you go?
New Orleans' French Quarter.
Where did you stay?
The Marriot on Canal Street. You could still see the high water marks along the buildings on Canal, a reminder of the past. The hotel wants to attract guests so the prices are low.
What did you do?
We were encouraged by residents to take the hurricane Katrina tour. With a calming graciousness and without sensationalism, the tour guide traced the evacuation routes, provided background and clarity to correct public misconceptions, and took us through mile after mile of flood-damaged areas. I was blessed with a chance to visit with Irvan Perez, an Isleño woodcarver and singer of decimas (10 line songs) who was selling his carved birds at the National Park Headquarters. He had lost everything: house, community, actually his entire island was wiped out in the flood, yet his spirit and attitude were strong. It was an incredibly touching experience.
Where did you eat?
A perennial favorite is Irene's Restaurant where every single item on the menu is superb and the prices are reasonable. One waiter, Seth, had us laughing 'til we hurt, with his attempts to convince us that Irene's New Orleans cheesecake beat all others. We held out for the crème brûlée and enjoyed it immensely.
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