Our first indoor stop on Day Four that wasn’t a restaurant was the grand St. Louis Cathedral, centerpiece of New Orleans’ Jackson Square and one of the oldest cathedrals in America. The outside id distinct in its own right, but the interior decorations and designs were impressive in their own right, even the parts identical to what you see in other, newer, more modest churches. There’s something about such a venerable structure that elevates even the most mundane details toward a greater spiritual presence.
At the end of Day Three, we first laid eyes upon Jackson Square when the sun was on its way out of sight. Some clouds had lingered after a light drizzle that had peppered the city while we were inside Mardi Gras World. The world generally looked gray everywhere we turned. Then we got a good night’s sleep, commenced Day Four, and walked into the idealized sky-blue morning you see above, beckoning us with its possibilities and begging for a photographic do-over.
On the morning of our second full day in New Orleans, one of our first stops was St. Louis Cathedral. The majority of the structure dates back to 1850, with minute portions integrated from still older predecessors. It’s the centerpiece of Jackson Square (as you’ll notice in the preceding chapter), free for tourists to visit (donations are suggested), serves an active congregation, and remains the seat of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New Orleans.
Bordering one side of the French Quarter is our old friend the Mississippi River, which we last saw in Minneapolis on our 2014 road trip. We’ve effectively now seen both ends of it. After dinner at the Royal House, we ended our day of too much walking with even more walking, checking out the art, the businesses, and the life teeming and scheming along its banks.
Over the last several entries in this series we’ve shared large batches of photos and memories from our visits to the National WWII Museum and to Mardi Gras World, but those two locations weren’t the only points of interest we saw on Day Three of our trip. For this episode we backtrack to recapture some of those random bits that made their own impacts on our overall New Orleans experience.
Day Three of our seven-day road trip was our first full day in the city of New Orleans. We already covered our musical breakfast at Cafe Beignet. As noted previously, “Going into this year’s vacation, we hoped the cuisine would be a highlight at our various stops — be it good ol’ Southern kitchen cookin’, Gulf-sourced fresh seafood, or, really, anything outside of international franchisees.” In that vein, lunch and dinner each had their own approach.
Previously on Midlife Crisis Crossover: my wife and I visited Mardi Gras World, a giant-sized warehouse-shaped museum in New Orleans in which floats are constructed, painted, stored, disassembled, reassembled, repainted, reconfigured, and displayed for guests who want to take a long walk through local party-time history.
As promised last time, here’s a sampling of the many heads, bodies, persons, places, and things on display that have entertained generations and enthralled the sober and the drunken alike.