The silence was deafening in the French Quarter. The hour – Monday morning at 11:00 AM – caused some of the stillness. But what happened on Sunday was the prime contributor.
Locals love their football, and the night before, the New Orleans Saints beat the stuffing out of the Dallas Cowboys. So the Quarter was suffering from a collective hangover, and most people were enjoying a recuperative sleep-in.
We were in town celebrating my birthday, and Cafe Maspero’s wonderful pastrami and cheese sandwich was our objective. We rounded the corner onto Chartres Street, and live music trumpeted through the silence. This is one minute of what we heard, and one of the reasons we love New Orleans. Give it a listen and enjoy.
And if you want to see some great dancers as well:
If you love New Orleans as much as we do, then you may enjoy these posts:
Sandwich Safari: Bagging the Big 3 in the Big Easy
Jackson Square in the Fog
This is New Orleans
Hope to get there someday. Thanks for sharing a taste of it – fabulous! ~SueBee
It is a unique destination and I’m sure that you’d enjoy it SueBee. As they say in NOLA; Laissez les bons temps rouler! ~James
Two years of high school French, and living in Paris for a few months back in the late 70s… I’m guessing: Let the good times roll! ~SueBee 🙂
Perfect translation SueBee. And given all the french speaking Cajuns in NOLA, your language skills will come in handy. ~James
We loved New Orleans and these surprise musical encounters on street corners. OK and we had never encountered alcohol slushes in food courts 🙂
Sue, one thing we learned when we lived in New Orleans, is that there’s never any shortage of music, food or drink. We’d go to a weekend festival and there was a queue at the beer truck at 8 AM. ~James
Great sounds indeed. I’ve never been to the area, but Leslie insists we will soon. Excited!!
Steve, listen to Leslie on this one. I don’t say this very often, but New Orleans truly is one-of-a-kind. Given its colorful history, and the joi de vivre attitude you guys would fit right in. If you can, rent an apartment uptown or close to the garden district, You’ll love it. ~James
Nothing better than appreciating the joys of home. Can’t wait to get there one day!
Thanks Chris. You’re right, we never get tired of returning to New Orleans. It’s truly a unique city, and I’m sure you’d enjoy it. ~James
Thanks for sharing a little New Orleans. We are definitely missing our home since we are on the road. I noticed your sandwich post from a few months ago. Definitely try Crabby Jack’s for po’boy’s when you are in town next time. They are a bit out of the way but the duck/gravy or shrimp remoulade/fried green tomato po’boys are so worth it! If you are in the Quarter, Killer Po’Boys (Inside the Erin Rose bar) is delicious as well.
That’s so funny you mentioned Crabby Jack’s Diana. We had lunch there and it was wonderful. While we were in NOLA, I searched online for “best cheap eats” and Crabby Jacks turned up. Terri had the 1/2 shrimp 1/2 oyster poboy, and I had the catfish. It was the best seafood we’ve had in a while, and we had great leftovers. It’s definitely on our list now. And the location was no problem for us, we wanted to go to Jefferson anyway. When we first moved to NOLA, we lived in Jefferson for 6 months (yuck), so we wanted to see if we could find our old apartment, and we did. ~James
Got to love that upright bass! I hope that I can get over to New Orleans someday. I am a big fan of jazz music, and some of the most incredible musicians are there.
Caitlin, I loved these guys. Their music was so infectious that it had everyone tapping their feet. If you haven’t already, don’t miss the youtube link I put in. These two dancers are a joy to watch. ~James
New Orleans is our favorite city. It’s not a bad drive since we live in the Houston area. We try to get there as often as we can. Have you been to the World War II museum? I wrote a post on it earlier this year. It’s world-class and not even finished yet.
Thanks Dixie. Unfortunately, we didn’t make it to the WWII Museum, but after reading your post, it’s on the list for next time. New Orleans is a bit of a hike for us, so we don’t visit often. But, it holds a special place in our hearts and we’ll always keep returning. ~James
Great way to start my day – tapping my toes. 🙂
Thanks Anita. If you haven’t already, make sure to click on the second youtube link. These dancers are fantastic. ~James
How wonderful!! It is high on my list for a US visit James. Perhaps higher than Vegas 🙂
If you can only choose one Madhu, definitely go to New Orleans. I’ve been to Vegas a number of times and it’s fun, but there’s nowhere in the US like New Orleans. It has an incredibly rich history, very interesting architecture, and wonderful food. ~James
Loved the dancer grooving in the background at the beginning of the video — before she formally joined the performance. Street performers are a cool part of New Orleans.
I think both these dancers are great, but I’m with you Mark, I particularly like the girl. Her feet are in constant motion and her movements are so smooth. BTW, we’ve been to NOLA a couple of times this year and discovered some new restaurants you might want to try. Muriel’s on Jackson Square has a prix fixe lunch menu that is very tasty and great value. Also, Crabby Jack’s (see comment above) is some of the best seafood we’ve had in a long time (and we live on the coast). It’s a bit out of the center, and is a classic, plain hole in the wall. But you won’t regret seeking it out. Portions are huge as well and prices are good. ~James
Oooh, love new places to try — the more out-of-the-way and hole-in-the-wall the better. Thanks, James!
Sounds like it must be aparty from morning to night. Hope you had a great birthday.
Thanks very much, it was a very enjoyable birthday. I like new places, but it’s also enjoyable to visit a place you know well. Especially when it’s as fun as NOLA. ~James
Love the music!
Happy Birthday James. Hope you had a great day.
Thanks Alison, It was so much fun to be back in one of our favorite cities again. The music was icing on the birthday cake! ~James
You’re right. I loved that minute! I’m even toe-tapping! Thanks for reminding me why I like that city so much.
Hi Rusha, New Orleans has lots of street musicians, and this group is one of the best we’d ever seen. They had the entire crowd toe-tapping! ~James
To funny we rolled into the French Quarter on this particular Monday morning to begin our week long trip to New Orleans! It was quiet and for good reason, loved the stomping the Saints gave the Cowboys :-). We had such a great time in the Big Easy! Happy belated birthday and what a great place to celebrate. Love N.O.!
That’s too funny Amy, that we were there at the same time. Actually, we arrived on Sunday PM and it was bonkers. We didn’t know there was a game, and were scratching our heads was to why it was so busy. When we got on the streetcar Monday AM we were happy to see it back to normal. We went to all our favorite places and discovered a new seafood place (Crabby Jack’s). Did you find any great restaurants? ~James
We camped on the North Shore on Sunday night and enjoyed watching the game with several locals.
As for restaurants, we found our favorite restaurant early in the week and loved it so much we went back a second time. Adolfo’s on Frenchmen Street is amazing. Little tiny place, but big on taste.
Great way to celebrate James, and like you, I always enjoy New Orleans. Peggy and I can wander the streets for hours, poking our nose into whatever captures our interest– whether it’s great music, delicious food or a voodoo shop. –Curt
As you may have read Curt, Terri and I started our adult lives together in NOLA. New jobs, right out of college, and living there was wonderful. We’ve always had a soft spot for the city, and over the years I’ve developed more of an appreciation for the architecture and history. It’s a colorful place that, even after Katrina, hasn’t lost its charm. ~James
I drove through right after Katrina on my way somewhere. The devastation was overwhelming. I am both amazed and pleased that NOLA has made the recovery that it has. And you are right about the history and architecture. Few other places in America provide a similar sense of time. –Curt
I have been bugging my husband for years to take me to New Orleans. I am hoping for a visit sometime within the next year. It is at the top of my must-see list in the southeast.
Keep bugging him LuAnn. You guys need to get to New Orleans. It’s a unique city, and there’s nowhere like it in the US. You’ll have a great time. Let us know and we can make some recommendations. And BTW, camping near the city is difficult and will take some planning ~James
Thanks for the info James. I am hoping that after our east coast tour next year that we can drop back down and visit New Orleans.
I also love the live music in New Orleans!
We love the street musicians as well Stephanie. It’s win-win, because it’s good for the city and the musicians as well. Thanks for dropping by the blog and for the comment. ~James