And All That Jazz, New Orleans

Full of giddiness that only a perfectly cooked pizza and fizzing bellinis can bring, we headed back to Jackson Square where I was . . .

“In the lounge. Waiting to welcome them (everyone who walked by) graciously to our home!”

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Anyone get that reference? Yes? 10 points to Griffindor.

Tucked back along the side of Jackson Square is the 1850 House – an easy place to miss if you don’t know it’s there.

A state museum of a recreated Antebellum era, middle-class house, with no detail left unaccounted for. So much so, it looks like a family living there, up and left in the middle of  life one day.

First though, you tackle the steep winding staircases (thankfully, Philadelphia prepared me for this).

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Yes, I did play host for anyone who would listen to me.

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Until I saw the children’s dolls. Something straight out of your nightmares that only Amy Schumer could love. My hosting ambitions promptly died after that (along with part of my soul).

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The back porch was equally as terrifying. You walk around completely unsteady as it’s sloped downward for rainwater runoff. Just a tad (massively) unnerving.

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The house is well worth a visit (despite the dolls and porch).

We emerged back into the humid New Orleans air and strolled around Jackson Square looking at local artists’ work, watching street performers, listening to music and people watching – you’ll see everything from bachelorettes to families to people in pirate costumes stroll by you in the course of just a few minutes. I’ve never been anywhere with such a hodgepodge crowd as in New Orleans.

Before we go further, can we talk about the humidity. I’m pretty lucky that my hair is straight and has never been reactant to the weather. That is, until New Orleans.

The humidity there was so intense I would wake up with it flat and straight and within 20 minutes of going outside, it would poof out and flip to the point that any 60s woman would be insanely jealous.

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When the humidity and crowds became a little too much we headed over to the Carousel Bar in the Hotel Monteleone.

“The Carousel Bar, that’s an interesting name. I wonder where it came from”  – you

Well, lucky for you I have the answer. The bar is a carousel. A literal carousel that slowly revolves as you enjoy a signature drink and watch the streams of people walking past on their way to Bourbon Street.

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To get a seat at the bar, you pretty much have to auction off your unborn child. If you’re not willing to do that, there are plenty of squashy arm chairs and couches pulled up next to large windows.

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We ordered a round of Pimm’s and settled in, watching the world go by and the carousel turn.

Have you ever had Pimm’s? It’s the most bizarre drink I’ve ever had and we spent all afternoon trying to think of how to describe it so, if you have a good description please leave a comment and let me know!

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As the evening drew closer, we headed back to the hotel for a quick change and then out to dinner.

We made reservations at Galatoire’s, a fancy restaurant that’s been around since the start of the 20th century.

The kind of place that keeps sports jackets at the front in case men come to dine without one.

A word of advice, the website says business casual and, if to you, business casual means dressing up a nice pair of jeans – don’t. The looks and scorn we received from some of the older patrons was venomous.

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But there’s nothing a little wine can’t fix.

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Also, can we talk about how I look like someone straight out of a vampire book? Maybe I spent too much time at the cemetery. I don’t know.

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If you go, get the Panna Cotta. Don’t ask questions. Just do it.

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Full to bursting, we headed back out to Bourbon Street (with our fellow jean wearers) and headed over to the one place I was adamant about visiting on our trip: a jazz club.

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Irving Mayfield’s Jazz Playhouse, located in the Royal Sonesta is a place  I cannot recommend enough. Dim lighting, strong drinks and jazz that speaks to your soul. What more could you want out of an evening.

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We saw Quiana Lynell sing and I can’t find the words to describe how spectacular she is. I could have listened to her all night – she has this amazing ability to just completely fill you up with whatever song she is singing.

I have her CD in my car currently playing on repeat. Be sure to check her out on Spotify:

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The perfect end to an incredible day.

An evening spent listening to jazz in New Orleans. It doesn't get much better than this

A post shared by Caitlin (@wandererandwolf) on

I was nervous about New Orleans – I dreamed of visiting since I was young and was afraid it would not live up to the enormous expectations I had. Let me tell you, it did. It absolutely did.

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