Mardi Gras is here! - Tues 24th Feb, 4:45pm

by tosca on Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Nobody parties like the New Orleanians - they throw down! Or as one young girl told me today as we were catchin' beads, 'Nobody front like N'Awlins!' And she's right. Slept in late (no leisurely breakfast with the local B&B guests this morning) and raced through getting ready to head to Bourbon Street. Which is even MORE of a zoo today than it's ever been in the last 7 days of my stay here. I can hardly begin to describe what I've seen..but I'ma try :-)

What I Have Seen: boobs and arse - and that was before I even GOT to Bourbon Street LOL Some car slammed on their brakes as I was crossing Esplanade Ave (just around the corner) and 2 women and a man jump out, one (almost) in a bustier and hotpants, one in angel wings and a bustier and fishnet tights oh and bikini bottoms (let's not forget those, right?) and he was in a skirt and fishnet tights and a padded bra. Then I get TO Bourbon Street and there's costumes left, right and centre. Men in drag (and the most sensational costumes I have ever seen in my life), a bunch of ppl lined up facing a wall while everyone took pictures of their butts (I shit you not), people on stilts, people with fake boobs, people with real boobs, people with fake butts, people with real butts, a man striding past wearing a t-shirt that reads 'I LOVE MY PENIS' and he has on a thong LOL Then there was the guy at the bottom of Bourbon Street who flashed me while hoochie dancing to 'When the Saints go marching in.' I was admiring his teal blue cocktail dress when he started winding and grinding to the brass band that was playing and next thing WHOA full frontal and I was blinded. One man passed out at my feet - I'd like to say it was my charisma but he was three sheets to the wind. He bumped in to me, smiled (blissfully unaware) and said, 'I'd like to show you a good time - work with me, it'll only take a minute.' What a sweet talker LOL Then he keeled over and passed out LMAO So I waved a police officer over, who promptly said, 'Ma'am...what'd you do?' Huh - so he had to radio for EMS and they hauled the guy away to a tent to re-hydrate him. I'm still not sure that'll help him. His head's gonna hurt tomorrow :-) I saw an elderly woman all dressed up beautifully...with curlers in her hair LOL It was precious! Absolutely precious.

Speaking of EMS, they have tents set up all around the city to see to people's injuries. I kid you not but the main cause of injuries during Mardi Gras (other than the obvious drinking too much and passing out - as the t-shirt says 'I got Bourbon faced on Shit Street' and it's the truth) is directly related to beads! I ain't kidding - people get smacked by beads around the head, in the face, on other parts of the body. It sounds kinda funny but it bloody well hurts LOL Now as a result, I'm gun shy everytime I see a bag of beads come flying near me LOL I spend more time ducking them than catching them - although I do have about 120 beaded necklaces, now, so YAY ME. Will have some for family, friends and me =)

Spent all day at the parades - Zulu and Rex and wow. The mess at the end - mess aside though, it's great fun. The marching bands, the cheerleaders (omg I've seen a lifetime's worth of spandex, sequins, leggings, pantyhose, bustiers, flags, trombones, lame, boots with tassles to last me a lifetime). I'm sunburnt! Stood in the freakin' hot sun for ages to watch the parades go past. Picked a good couple to stand next to - she didn't want any throws (loot they chuck at you from the floats, e.g. stuffed toys, empty cups, beaded necklaces, bracelets, etc.) but for some reason she kept getting hit in the head with stuff so she'd give it all to me :-) Thank you, strange lady! Each parade is preceded by a tonne of police cars (Mobile Command vehicle, Incident Vehicle, 3 or 4 police cars, 3 or 4 Mardi Gras World pickups and sometimes even 1 or 2 tractors (in case a float breaks down, as one did the other day) - so nothing is left to chance.

Midnight tonight signals the official end of Mardi Gras so I'm going to head down about 11:15pm to get some shots of the New Orleans Mounted Police and then, when they start closing Bourbon Street down, head off to midnight mass with everyone else (drunk and sober alike). One local has said to be very careful as the police get quite pushy in an effort to shut everything down. Oh, and before you ask, this is a Catholic festival which is why it ends in mass!

Good lord, my feet are tired and my head hurts (not to mention that my nose is red as a lobster and so are my arms) but it's a good hurt. Gonna rest up for a bit until 10:30pm and then get ready to go out all over again heh :-) I heard a comment earlier today from an elderly couple, who said that they found the day costumes rather humdrum LOL They did advocate my coming back if I want my eyebrows singed and hey, what's a little eyebrows between friends, right? Right!

SONZ & LOGAN: Before you ask no I haven't yet done a Cajun Swamp tour OR the Lower 9th tour. Two reasons mostly, a lot of the locals I've talked to are still quite sensitive about what happened as a result of Hurricane Katrina. They're not partial to tourists for the sake of tourism - if people can find another way to help out, that's even better. So, I'm still in two minds about it all. I sat, yesterday, on the steps of the levee drinking my mango daiquiri and pondering whether or not I would do a tour and still haven't made up my mind. As for the swamp tour - $95 to ride an airboat? I'm all for supporting local businesses! But I'm also a cheapskate LMAO Ok, no I'm not - I'm just not sure I want to be thrown around the bayou on a swampboat/airboat thingee. Eep! Still haven't done the plantations, either, and probably won't. Mostly 'cause I'm plum tired :-)

One comment

Mmmmm Mango daiquiri...man New Orleans has captured your heart. Good to see you're getting beads without the flesh.

by UgahBugah on March 2, 2009 at 2:29 PM. #

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