New Orleans Trip Report
Sorry about the delay, but I finally got around to typing up my trip report.
My roadtrip took place between December 29th 2003 through January 3rd 2004. Myself and 3 friends drove from Ottawa, IL to New Orleans, LA. Or main goal was to party in the French quarter on New years. But in the end that ended up being one of the least important parts of the trip.
First stop – Memphis, TN. We went out to Beale street. I really enjoyed this. It was a Monday night so it was not crowed. We were able to walk into any bar and sit down. We went to Club 152 which had live music. And we went to a piano bar, Silky O'Sullivians. Both bars were fun. The first was more dance club like. The second was more laid back and casual. If anyone is in Memphis, I'd recommend spending an evening on Beale street
We also make a stop at Graceland. We did not pay 20 bucks for the tour so we just took pictures from the outside of the gate and bought a souvenir to say we were there. I guess if one was an Elvis fan it would be more entertaining but I'm a Beatles woman.
New Orleans – Due to a late start and an extended stop in John W. Kyle state park in Mississippi, we arrived to New Orleans late. So we did not do anything the first night. The next day we explored the French quarter in the daylight. We did some shopping, eating, and drinking. After a nap, we went out for New Years Eve. It was fun, but WAY to crowed for my liking. Bourbon street was packed and sometimes we could not walk through the mobs of people. But we experienced the French Quarter party and were able to see a good firework show.
The next day was a holiday so a lot of things were closed but we drove around the Garden District – very pretty – and went to a swamp park south of the city.
On the way out of town we went on a swamp tour which I really enjoyed. It was a 2 hour boat ride through the rivers/swamps/and bayous. Then we began our journey home with a drive along the Mississippi coast. The white sand beaches are pretty. I imagine in the summer months these beaches are crowed, but when we were there we had the beaches to ourselves.
Stop on the way home – Lynchburg, TN. We toured the Jack Daniels Distillery. This was a definite highlight of the trip. They distillery is in a tiny town of almost 400 in the hills of TN. The tour is free. No free samples, b/c the county is dry. But free deep breaths of the 140 proof whiskey in the charcoal mellowing process. There was a lot of history in the tour and I really enjoyed seeing the whiskey making process. We went on a Saturday, so they were not bottling any whiskey. If anyone has the choice, try and go on a weekday.
Those were the highlights. I can expand on anything if anyone wishes.
But here are some tips/lessons learned.
1. It's the little things that make the trip memorable. For example, we made it a mission to teach one friend the lyrics to "The Gambler," as she has never heard the song.
2. Take a blank journal/sketch book for everyone to write down things during the trip. It really helps pass the time in the car, encourages conversation, and is an excellent souvenir.
3. Don't sleep all day – especially on winter trips. We fell into this trap. Yeah it is nice to stay out late at night. But it gets dark really early in the winter so parks close, and you cannot see any scenery. But if just going out at night is your agenda, I guess it does not matter. It's just my 2 Cents.
I thought (just about) everyone could sing along with the Gambler. Great song -- lot of deep thoughts -- or deep glasses or something along those lines.
Thanks for the trip report ----
She was born in Hong Kong. So she was not raised on the typical american culture.