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Our Magnificent Journey
Chapter 7
New Orleans


Henry Swanson  
Day 1
The Journey Begins

I drove my Chevy to the levee but the levee was gone...

Friday began in a deluge, the remnants of an unusually wet Tucson monsoon season. Apropos.
Carol packed our bags in secret, so as not to upset Cody who knows all and can read minds.
At 11:30AM I quietly backed the car out of the garage and loaded our suitcases while Carol kept Cody and Merlin occupied. Quick hugs and kisses and tail-waggings, then we slipped into the car for the twenty-minute ride to Tucson International Airport.
On the plane to NOLA
A smooth two-hour flight to Dallas, just in time for American Flight 1226 and a quiet, uneventful hour flight into New Orleans. The full moon over the port wing as darkness crept upon the plane was spectacular. We saw the lights of the Crescent City and landed at New Orleans at around 7PM local time.
Moon over the wing
Our mission is three-fold: 1) to spend several days working with Habitat for Humanity at Musician's Village, 2) to explore a place whose flavor is unlike any other American city, and 3) to inject some badly-needed dollars into its ailing economy.
We quickly collected our bags, found our Jeep at Avis and drove several miles east down I-10 until we located Canal Street, then South Pierce Street and the wonderful Bed and Breakfast called the 1896 O'Malley House. Owned by Brad Smith and Larry Watts, this gorgeous three-story Colonial-style house has been meticulously restored and although damaged by Katrina, is back on her feet. And what feet. The water line is still there, but so is all the charm that you could imagine, down to the smallest detail.
1896 O'Malley House
Angela, the concierge, greeted us at the door, and along with her friend, artist and Mississippi boat pilot Michael, proceeded to give us an informal tour of this truly one-of-a-kind B&B.
Michael graciously suggested a restaurant called Cochon for a late dinner, so we jumped in the Jeep and drove down Canal Street towards the Mississippi, hung a right towards the Warehouse District, and found the corner of Andrew Higgens and Tchoupitoulas Street. Tommy, a friend of Michael's, waited on us and served us shrimp and crabmeat pie (fantastic,) wood-fired oysters (out-of-this-world,) and local red fish with sweet onions. Carol had a chilled chardonnay and I sampled the local brew, Abita Rye. Tommy's service was impeccable and our food was incredible. Cochon has a warm, laid-back ambience, just what we needed, and we highly recommend it. Cochon is located at 930 Tchoupitoulas Street, 504.588.2123. Tommy brought us sweet potato pie and banana pudding for desert, and our feast at Cochon was complete.
At 10:30 we said goodnight to Tommy, then drove the short distance back up Canal Street to the 1896 O'Malley House, where we walked up the beautiful stained wooden steps to our room, number 7, and fell into the high (Carol had to use ladder/stairs to get into it) soft, comfortable bed, and we fell into a restful sleep.
Our room # 7

Next Day


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email david@davidandcarol.com