Friday, October 29, 2010

Cruising Past Refineries and Plantations

On Sunday, Day 2 of our NOLA trip, my dear husband and I made plans to drive up River Road along the west bank of the Mississippi (look I spelled it right!) River and enjoy the scenery. Once we had roused from our ability to sleep in without a 2 year old nut to wake us up, we drove over to Cafe du Monde in hopes of beignets and cafe au lait. Unfortunately, we didn't think about the fact that there was a Saints game in town that day with a 12 o'clock start. Think line wrapped around the corner and down the side walk. We could not imagine enjoyable thoughts of standing in the spit of rain for an hour. Off we headed to Starbucks for our own version of beignets and cafe au lait - sour cream donuts and iced coffee. Thank you to the Starbucks employee who whispered that she gave me two extra donuts since the first two were "a little bit broken". Thanks - 4 donuts - just what this girl needed while stuck in the car for hours.

Driving up River Road is a mix of refineries (oil, chemical, grain, etc.) that are incredibly large and impressive, quaint towns that have turned back the clock 30 years, sugar cane fields that go on for miles and beautiful plantations. There were times that we got a glimpse of a very large barge or ship over the levee that was carrying supplies up and down the Mississippi. It is just amazing to be driving among towns so simple in nature that are driven by the industry of the river and the accompanying refineries. The sugar cane fields have inspired my husband that we should buy land along the river in Louisiana and build our own little plantation.

Our first stop was Oak Alley Plantation. It was GORGEOUS! We were able to walk the grounds and go on a quick tour of the home to learn more about the way of life and people that had occupied the home in times past. I will let the pictures do the talking:
 Oak Alley
 The reason it is called Oak Alley - isn't this breathtaking?
 Loved the tall magnolia trees.

After a lunch of Zapps potato chips and Dr. Pepper - yeah the picture of health - we continued along River Road. Our next stop was Nottoway Plantation. The mister took me to this beauty for one of our first dates while he was attending LSU. We took these pictures from the levee across the street since they were setting up the grounds for a wedding.
 Nottoway Plantation
 View along the levee
Way down yonder on the Mississippi (that is how it goes right?) Just kidding.

After leaving Nottoway we drove through Baton Rouge and the LSU campus. There is no way to describe the magnificence and magnitude of Tiger Stadium. Even from the bridge over the Mississippi it appears larger than life. We headed back to NOLA along I-10 in order to meet a friend driving over from Gulfport. We met up in the quarter and enjoyed a dinner at Crescent City Brewhouse followed by dueling pianos at Pat O'Briens. The dueling pianos is a must on your NOLA to do list. The crowd can be a bit rowdy, but that is what you should expect in the quarter. Finished off with our long awaited beignets and cafe au lait from Cafe du Monde, it was the perfect day!

with Belles and Beauxs

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