The Accidental Mardi Gras

We stumbled into Mardi Gras. We were 100 miles out of New Orleans, having just decided to drive there from Pensacola earlier that morning, when Julya figured out we would be there for the early days of Mardi Gras. A lucky hit on the internet got us a great hotel on Saint Charles for 59 bucks a night. Last night we watched two parades from our porch. Julya stood on the curb like a child, with Annie in her arms, beseeching the float people to toss her the beads and toys. We ended up with several pounds of the stuff. This made up for Julya having to go to a Civil War photograph exhibit at the New Orleans Museum of Art and a the WWII Museum, to satisfy two of my passions. She is, as my mother used to say, “a good trooper.”

We decided that we needed to work on our Spanish. So, on Sunday, we’re flying to Mexico City and then driving by escort to San Miguel Allende, for a three-week intensive Spanish course. We will be living with a local family, and will be in class four hours a day. This should put us in better shape for our trip to Spain in May.

As for Mardi Gras, I enjoyed it, but not nearly as much as if I were still drinking. Some of it seems a little forced—like, “Now, everyone will have a good time, and I mean everyone!”—but not overly so. We carried the kids around with us, which brought a lot of attention from the drunks, all good natred.

On to Austin, Texas, for a little Tex-Mex music before we disappear south of the border.

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