29.06.2013 30 °C
Hopped on the bus at 8.30 am for our morning excursion to a plantation, Oak Alley Plantation, located on the Mississippi River about an hour and a halfs drive from New Orleans.
We left the hotel in the middle of a massive storm. I thought Cyclone Katrina had returned. I have never seen anything like it. I mean, we have huge storms in Australia, but the amount of rain, the thunder and lightning were unbelievable. The roads were flooded in minutes. The photos from the bus aren't the best, but hopefully you get the idea.
We came in and out of rain for quite a while. As we approached the plantation, there were some very interesting cloud formations. Again, not great shots from the bus.
We arrived at Oak Alley Plantation and were in awe of the beauty of the grounds, the beautiful mansion, but most of all the 300 year old canopy of giant live oak trees.
This is the dining room. The cutlery is set upside down on the table because the family crest is engraved on the back. Also, the pieces were quite large, which is a sign of the wealth of the family.
This is the main bedroom. The mattress was stuffed with horse hair and spagnum moss and after the night's use, it had become quite flat and lumpy. It was then fluffed up which took anything from 2 to 5 hours to do, so once it was completed, no one was allowed to sit on the bed until night time.
I have decided to stay in New Orleans, apply for this job and work in this house!
It was an absolutely stunning property and we were very glad we visited it. Also, it had the best gift shop I have seen in America. Very classy stuff and not too badly priced either.
Where the slaves lived.
A small grave yard in the grounds of the original owners, the Stewart's.
Back into New Orleans and it is still a very sleazy place with loud awful music coming from every door way trying to attract the young to come in and drink. Not much jazz inside, but some groups performing out on the street. It's still hot but not as bad as last night.
Our group then went to lunch at the Court of the Two Sisters, located in the French Quarter. It was an extremely atmospheric buffet restaurant and the food was plentiful with stacks of choice. It was delicious. We sat with Denise and Reece from northern NSW. A group played jazz while we ate. Just lovely.
After lunch we walked slowly back to our hotel and called into a few shops on the way back. They are all so tacky and full of rubbish and junk. It's starting to warm up.
Dinner at Bubba Gumps tonight. The food was good; we both had fish, mine was grilled with shrimp and Phil had normal fish and chips. There is talk that Bubba Gumps might be opening a restaurant in Sydney soon. If they did, I'm sure it would be a great hit.
We were lazy and had a rickshaw ride back to our hotel. Phil has a sore knee and it's pretty warm outside, but nowhere as warm as it was last night! Besides, I don't feel very comfortable walking around these streets at night. Too many crazy people drinking too much. Our 'driver' was Ooti, a first nation American. He was a really nice guy.