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The Big Easy- New Orleans!
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Knifethrower



Joined: 29 Oct 2006
Posts: 218
Location: Heaven, actually.

PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2007 3:42 pm    Post subject: The Big Easy- New Orleans! Reply with quote

Hello Everyone!

Its time to get cracking on my plans for Louisiana next week.

I hope to get a chance to swing by Pestoman's booth and sample/purchase some of his delights, as my secondary goal (besides work) is to eat my way through the city!

I am all ears as to what is open, what hole in the wall places are worth the search and how to properly pronounce things- I wish to pay homage to my host city and all its fine history, not butcher its local culture and language idioms!

I will be travelling with an out of town friend until Friday of next week, and I am concerned for my traipsing about alone on the weekend after their departure. If anyone can offer thoughts, concerns, comforts and recommendations, I am an eager listener!

Many thanks- this readership is a fantastic wealth of resources, and I truly appreciate it!
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Barbara



Joined: 13 Nov 2004
Posts: 899
Location: Gold Coast Australia

PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2007 7:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Have a great time Knifethrower.
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2007 10:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Watch out for the nutria!
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Knifethrower



Joined: 29 Oct 2006
Posts: 218
Location: Heaven, actually.

PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2007 11:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nutria?

I hear they taste like chicken...

Barb, Erin- let's all meet on Tchipitoulas Street and grab us a Po' Boy!

Razz
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gingerpale



Joined: 23 Jan 2006
Posts: 1324

PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2007 2:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Like SCUBA, (Self-Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus) I think NUTRIA is an acronym. N'Awlins Underground.. Never Underestimate..
Raucous Ill-conceived Adventures.. I don't remember exactly how it goes.. Anyway, have fun!

There is a US site called "Chowhound"--you can search for personal opinions about restautrants in New Orleans (or any city). It's very big with lots of posts, very current.
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2007 2:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually a more fitting one would be ROUS's= rodent's of unusual size. A little "Princess Bride" for you. They are giant rat/dog mutants that are well.......swamp fare.
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Knifethrower



Joined: 29 Oct 2006
Posts: 218
Location: Heaven, actually.

PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2007 12:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh, heck...not the Fire Swamp!
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Knifethrower



Joined: 29 Oct 2006
Posts: 218
Location: Heaven, actually.

PostPosted: Thu May 17, 2007 9:03 pm    Post subject: HELP! Reply with quote

Okay, everyone. I am trying to not wail in agony, but my accomplice that was supposed to join me in New Orleans has had a family emergency and is unable to go.

This turn of events has me a little concerned for safety as I have the urge to meander all through the area and act like a tourist should. Short of staying in my hotel room and ordering takeout from all the cool places to eat, I need ideas on what to do and how to go about it as a solo female.

I really need help, not just for places to eat, but how to get around smartly!

Thanks,

Jen
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Judy



Joined: 29 Sep 2004
Posts: 1196
Location: buried under a pile of books somewhere in Adelaide, South Australia

PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2007 10:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Awww, Jen, what a shame. I spent a weekend in the center of San Francisco by myself about 12 years ago and was so terrified that I didn't venture out after dark.

So I'm no help at all, but by some strange coincidence or synchronicity or whatever, I received one of those 'pass this on to every woman you know' emails this afternoon about staying safe. I won't cut and paste all the stuff in it, but this one stood out, both because of the location, and because it's actually a good piece of advice for everyone to remember.

Learned this from a tourist guide in New Orleans.
If a robber asks for your wallet and/or purse, DO NOT HAND IT TO HIM. Toss it away from you.... chances are that he is more interested in your wallet and/or purse than you, and he will go for the wallet/purse.
RUN LIKE MAD IN THE OTHER DIRECTION!

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gingerpale



Joined: 23 Jan 2006
Posts: 1324

PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2007 2:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well that was soothing and reassuring, Judy! Wink

Knifethrower, this trip is work-related, yes? Can you throw yourself on the mercy of your employer for some connections/introductions?
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RipenessIsAll



Joined: 18 May 2007
Posts: 2
Location: Texas

PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2007 4:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jen, I just had to register and respond to your last post.

New Orleans is definitely experiencing problems, and personal safety when traveling alone is not to be taken lightly, but as a single woman myself, it reads as if you were taking off for the back alleys of Calcutta rather than the Big Easy!

NOLA is still populated, and by a diversity of people and in most of the neighborhoods that always had population. Maybe not as much in some of the northern areas that are near Lake Ponchitrain, but all the viable tourist areas are alive and kicking - and safe. And the relative quiet of the place - compared only to pre-Katrina liveliness - is very pleasant for residents and visitors alike.

I was there last in January and tables were easy to come by and people were so pleased and grateful for all out of town visitors. They need you, Jen, and will take care of you once they know you're visiting.

I recommend:

The Bon Ton on Magazine Street, CBD - pricey but local-filled enclave with all the Louisiana classics: crawfish etoufée, jambalaya. Their house dressing on a salad is really delish, as is the huge bread pudding.

Mother's on Poydras Street, CBD for breakfast. Eggs any way, grits, their famous thick cut ham, chocory coffee. Hope you're not on a diet. Well, I guess you wouldn't be if you're going to NOLA in the first place!

Parkway Bakery near Bayou St. John in Mid-City. You'll need a car or bike to get here, but it is lowbrow poboy heaven - they are HUGE, you'll eat half and take the other half home. A local legend, it's filled with business people, messangers, cops, you name it.

Liuzza's is also in Mid-City on Bienville St. Also a local hang-out where tourists rarely go, places like this will reassure you that you are surrounded by people who believe in the city and its rebirth - those are hearty souls you want to know! Their thing is beer in a frosted mug and a roast beef sandwich that can be covered in gravy - very messy. If that doesn't sound appealing, there are plenty of other things on the menu.

Bouffa's is a little corner bar on Esplanade (the eastern edge of the Quarter) that is famous for it's Bouffa Burger - big and greasy. Order with a cold locally-brewed Abita beer. Your bar stool neighbor could be working on his Mac with his dog at his side. Gotta love the flaunt of the canine health code rules there!

Another burger place on Esplanade further upriver, more legendary, is the Port of Call. There may be a long line to get in, but if you're alone, try to squeeze in around the bar where people are probably watching a sports game. The burgers are again huge and always served with a baked potato.

The Quarter is filled with all sorts of great places to eat every meal. Or to get a cocktail to go and walk over to Jackson Square to see what impromptu entertainment there is.

Also Magazine Street, stretching from the edge of the Quarter to Tulane through the Garden District is very chic and full of cute shops and good restos. The closer the neighborhood to the river, the less their damage from Katrina. The Garden District was spared and is still just so beautiful.

I hope you stick with your plans and go. I think you'll love it and really come away with an amazing feel for the city and what they are going through right now, it's really tremendous and courageous.

If you want to hook up with other diners for maximum comfort value, go to www.nomenu.com and see what they're up to when you're there. Tom Fitzmorris runs the site with tons of info and there are always groups trying new restaurants and they update you with the restaurants that are reopening as they do. The site is a great resource.

Have a blast and laissez les bons temps rouler!

Amy
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Knifethrower



Joined: 29 Oct 2006
Posts: 218
Location: Heaven, actually.

PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2007 4:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Amy,

Thank goodness! I really appreciate you taking the time to suggest places and to lessen my stress quite a bit. I had heard that the people of New Orleans are very thrilled to have company, and that is partly why I was interested in visiting for my conference. I am glad to go, to see what I can, to do some photo journaling and to bring back information on everything from Katrina and Rita's devastation and the local culture, as well as new tools for my hospital.

Thank you also for the tip on Mr. Fitzmorris' site- what a great idea! I might be running for meals between classes, but on the evenings I have time to do something organized, I may give them a look-up!

I'll do a Google search on bicycle shops that offer rentals, in case I decide to spin about town on my last day or two there- cover more ground and hit the Garden District perhaps!

My hat off to you for the encouragement and good wishes,

Jen
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2007 5:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Be careful in the fire swamp!
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"It's watery....and yet there's a smack of ham."

"It's hot ham water."
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Knifethrower



Joined: 29 Oct 2006
Posts: 218
Location: Heaven, actually.

PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2007 3:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have almost decided to take myself out for a swanky din-din at Commanders Palace. I just cannot pass it up, no matter how odd it may look to be a woman dining in a fine establishment alone.

Any thoughts?
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Rachel



Joined: 22 Oct 2006
Posts: 296
Location: Santa Barbara, CA

PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2007 12:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jen, I say go for it! I'm generally not a big fan of dining by myself, but I have been known to do it in situations where I know that I might be passing up a once-in-a-lifetime experience if I don't. Bring along a book or a magazine if you feel particularly shy... and let us know how it was!
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