Saturday, April 27

Jazz Fest

Hi from the crowd! Unbelievable.

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Jazz Fest was great yesterday. I LOVE that zydeco music! Weehah!IMG_9181

Even the old Dixieland dudes can get down.IMG_9161

In addition to terrific music and amazing FOOD, there are parades.IMG_9169

This picture is funny because I was taking it of Jim, Cheryl, and Alan, when the chick on the right stepped into the photo. She apologized but I like it just like it is.

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We met a gal who insisted I don her alligator hat and then she made me a cocktail and insisted I drink it. I did.IMG_9209-001

We love jazz fest but I think this might be our last one. Boogying for hours on your feet is hard work! Next year: Stagecoach! It’s only a mile from our house. And they have chairs. And I dig country.

Capture

Friday, April 26

Mobile Alabama and New Orleans Looziana

We originally intended to do nothing more than eat and sleep in Mobile, but we discovered that Mobile has a lot of charm and history…and some amazing houses. So we went on a little tour…..

The light wasn’t as good the next day, weather had rolled in, but here are a few of the houses I snapped:

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Even this lil bitty shotgun house is sweet and lovely.IMG_9112

Next is New Orleans. We rolled into town in the afternoon and JJ went up to take a nap, but the sun was out and I went photographing. Here are some everyday street scenes:

I wonder what she was selling.IMG_9129

I was photographing the chopper when this old guy in a Harley-Davidson shirt stopped in his tracks to admire the bike. IMG_9144

These kids were sharing a bottle of hooch and just digging the sunshine.IMG_9145

Not pizza delivery. Look closer. IMG_9156

Tuesday, April 23

St. Augustine to Mobile

Jeez—where the hell am I! We have covered so much ground my head is spinning.

No pictures from St. Augustine. Nothing to see there. Besides, it was cold, blustery, gray, and ugly and I took the day off from camera-schlepping.

We had the long drive from St. Augustine Florida to Mobile Alabama today. Many long hours in the car and sore butts to prove it. Thanks to modern cell phone technology we found this joint on a side street in Pensacola.

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I had this:IMG_9060

Well, I only had the small piece on the left and gave the big one to Jim. Chicken ‘n Waffles, don’t you love it? It was goooooood.

Then we went to the Naval Air Museum. I loved this statue because it depicts aviators from WWI, WWII, Korea, Vietnam, and Desert Storm in order from left to right.

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We finally rolled into Mobile around 5. This is our quaint hotel. Where I am as I write this. Writing briefly, I might add, because it has been a very long day.IMG_9068

We walked around the neighborhood and saw this. Do you know what it is?IMG_9066

It’s the ill-fated Carnival Triumph of the Seas. IMG_9093

We didn’t have plans to do much in Mobile besides eat and sleep, but on our way to dinner we discovered that Mobile is AMAZING! So tomorrow we are going to take a tour and see some of this beautiful city. Oh, just wait until you see some of the houses here! IMG_9091

Over and out. Good night.

Sunday, April 21

The LowCountry

These towns are as charming and hospitable as I have ever encountered anywhere. Oh my.

Charleston is lovely and quaint. It has many grand homes built around the turn of the 19th century. The Palmetto Tree, in the picture below, is the state tree of South Carolina.IMG_8962 copy

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Below is the Citadel, a military college steeped in tradition. IMG_8953

Offshore from Charleston out in the channel is Fort Sumter, where the first shots of the Civil War were fired. This bullet, which is actually an elongated cannonball and about 8 inches diameter, went over the wall and is lodged in the inside wall of the fort.IMG_8964

Next we’ll look at Savannah from the windows of a trolley. What a picturesque town! The historic city is only about a mile square, and laid out in a grid with 22 squares (parks) like the one below.IMG_8994

The trees are magnificent beyond belief.IMG_8983

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So are the many fine mansions. These homes were built in the late 1700s to early 1800s and in those days the roads were not paved and the horses kicked up a lot of dust. So the houses here and in Charleston were built on raised foundations so the dust would not get inside. IMG_9033

Cotton made this area very prosperous after the Civil War. IMG_9009

Cheryl and me clowning around in some hats in the museum.IMG_9025

Friday, April 19

The South

We’ve barely begun and we’ve already seen so much.

First, Nashville. We absolutely love this charming little city. We actually talked about moving here. Pluses: No income tax; a ton of live music; user-friendly city. Minuses: One—and it’s a big one—humidity. Can’t do it nohow.

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This is what we called “Honky-Tonk Street. Broadway is lined with fall-in dives on both sides. It’s a little like Beale Street in Memphis, but Memphis is blues. Nashville is country, baby.  IMG_8908

It’s mid-April and the trees are in bloom. Stunning. We were at Andrew Jackson’s home, The Hermitage, and I tried to capture this big-ass bumblebee doing its thing.IMG_8842

We went to the Jack Daniel’s Distillery. I found it ionic that Jack Daniels is only produced at this location, which is in a dry county.IMG_8914

We were incredibly lucky to get in to Miss Mary Bobo’s Boarding House for lunch (“suppah”), where we sat at the same table with a dozen or so people from all around the world. Here are Jim and Alan in the parlor, telling stories, before the dinner bell is rung.IMG_8925

We went to the Ryman Auditorium, which was where the original Grand Ol’ Opry was. It started its life as a church—hence the pew seats—and later it was home to the Opry. It’s a live radio broadcast, which is a kick when the Cracker Barrel commercials come on. Nowadays it’s in a huge auditorium out in Opryland, forty minutes from town. But they still are ON AIR and they still have commercials for Viagra and Cracker Barrel.  IMG_8896No pics from the new Opry because I was on a camera break.

Of course, no trip to the south would be complete without a few stops at some Civil War battlefields. IMG_8938

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More later.