Chapitre 11: Mardi Gras in New Orleans, LA

In Février of 2009, I celebrated Mardi Gras in New Orleans, Louisiana.

It sure seems like it was yesterday when I hopped into a friend’s car and we took the road-trip down to the capitale du Jazz . Its charme, histoire, and culture welcomed us with open arms!

As cheesy as it sounds, I thought staying in the French Quarter would make me feel closer to the French and to France. Little did I know, I would get the chance to discover the ‘real’ France through studying abroad 3 years later…and I would come to find that it looked nothing like the French Quarter in New Orleans.

Instead of learning more about French culture, I learned about Voodoo culture (and Zulu)…

…and how the city’s residents came together after hurricane Katrina (despite the lack of government aid).

In 2009 (4 years after hurricane Katrina), the city still hadn’t fully récupérée from the hurricane.

I filled up on delicious cuisine Créole

and beignets from Café du Monde.

I really embraced the city…as a touriste (hey, it happens) who admires every street performer…

…and entre every shop from small boutiques to souvenir shops.

I enjoyed myself along with the milliard other Mardi Gras-ers.

5 Raisons to celebrate Mardi Gras in New Orleans:

  • Bourbon Street (enough said). As long as your drink is in a plastic cup, you can take the party from the bar to the street!

Why stay in a cramped bar anyway? The music can be heard just as loudly on the street as in the bar.

  • Free musique: It’s EVERYWHERE and it’s GOOD!

  • Masques. You don’t have to go to Venice to find a masque classique and beau…and it’s a partie of the Mardi Gras ensemble!

Or you can go full out in a costume!

  • The Mardi Gras Parade! You can even join the Mardi Gras parade even when you’re not a partie of it!

    Standing behind…butterflies?

There are a ton of parades in the week approaching Mardi Gras as well as on Mardi Gras itself: Take a look at this website for 2016’s parade routes (obviously, 2017 has not yet been determined).

  • Mardi Gras decorated cars. Obviously, people go all out for the compétition for the best maison décorée. But they certainly don’t define the line at “house”…They even décorent their cars!

There’s no better way than to spend Mardi Gras than dressed in a purple and gold masque with a trumpet full of your favorite cocktail and joining one of the many Mardi Gras parades on Mardi Gras…

…and hanging out with random street musiciens!

New Orleans, or N’Awlins to the locals, is the way to go! ♦

“The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.” Saint Augustine.


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