Cristen and the Big Easy, Day 1

Meet Cristen:


When I first saw Cristen at orientation over four years ago, I knew we would be friends because she had on some awesome green shoes. I was totally right. We quickly became friends, and, along with Erica, spent many weekends grading papers, eating Chinese, and watching our favorite TV shows. She joined me on many of my Indiana adventures, but since graduating over two years ago, we’ve had to settle for phone conversations and instant messaging. That is, until this past weekend.

This was totally an event worth cleaning my room for.

spic and span

i even dusted

Cristen got in around noon and then we went for lunch. In planning for Cristen’s visit, I had asked around and looked up different vegetarian restaurants. Luckily, one of my favorite places here worked out well, until they mixed up my beef shawarma with Cristen’s falafel. We figured it out pretty quickly. After lunch, we dropped off her bags at home and then headed out to the Quarter. I wanted to stop by the St. Louis #1 Cemetery, the oldest one in New Orleans, but it was already closed for the day. So we went to see a different Louis.

grandpa louis

People have often asked me if I’m related to Louis Armstrong, along with Neil and, more recently, Lance. I always say yes. We saw Congo Square, which is not as square as you might think.

congo square

And I finally got my picture taken here:

my name in lights

I’m going to go back some time when the letters are lit up.

We finally made it to the French Quarter in the late afternoon and wandered through the French Market. It was a rainy day and a downpour started just as we got there, but that didn’t stop these people from dancing to a brass band in the streets.

street dancing
(There were lots of swing dancers this weekend.)

Here are a few pictures from around the Quarter:

green door

little green house

Turns out, I start taking fewer and fewer pictures with each visit to the Quarter. One time, I didn’t even take my camera. I guess I’m really turning into a local. We caught a full performance of the street performers. They put on a show several times a day each weekend. I first saw it when Erica and Kevin were visiting last January. (Sidenote: I never got a chance to blog about their visit because my blog wasn’t working back then. Sad.) But we just caught the end of it then. Turns out, it’s the same every time. But still awesome.

After their performance, we went for African food at a place in the Quarter that was recommended by guide books, the Internet, and my iphone’s Urban Spoon app. Now I can officially recommend it because it really was delicious. We met up with some of my friends on Bourbon Street.

bourbon at night

But it wasn’t for the typical Bourbon debauchery, I promise. We actually went to see Opera on Tap at the Inn on Bourbon Street. Look, it was classy.


But the “opera” they were singing from that night was the Phantom of the Opera. When the singers took a break after a couple of songs, we took our departure and went to Cafe du Monde instead. Then we tried to find some less classy music on Frenchman Street, but didn’t have any luck. So we went back to Jackson Square so Cristen could have her fortune told.

mysterious fortune teller

Apparently, it’s going to be a really good year for Cristen. Hopefully some of that luck will rub off on me.



  1. kimmie · October 13, 2009

    I love that you say you’re related to all the Armstrongs! Makes me laugh!

  2. Pingback: Catching Up 4: Activity Days «

I love comments! Seriously, they make my day. Thanks for contributing to the conversation!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s