Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Kinky Boots in New Orleans

I know that Cindy Lauper is somehow involved with the Broadway production of Kinky Boots, and with the traveling ensemble show as well.  That's about all I know.  When you live in New Orleans, things from the outside world make very little impact.  We live in a self-contained city.

What happens in New Orleans may affect the music and culture of the rest of the world but what happens in the rest of the world rarely makes even a ripple in New Orleans.  We live in a microcosm all out own.

Wanna see some kinky boots?

New Orleans kinky boots

There they are in all their glory.  There is a story behind the pair of motorcycle boots left standing in the road in front of La Belle Esplanade but it isn't a story worth repeating here.  It is a New Orleans kind of story, one full of small scale mischief and magic and charm and delights that doesn't translate well if you live in another city or in a hamlet.

Kinky Boots is playing at the Saenger Theater soon.  I love going to the Saenger because it is beautifully and majestically restored post-Katrina.  That said, Frau Schmitt and I rarely go to the Saenger because it tends to be touring broadway shows and national touring acts.  Weird Al Yanokovic was here last week and I wanted to go, but we had other things to do.  When we want to see a real theatrical performance we usually go to the symphony, which plays at the Orpheum Theater, around the corner from the Saenger.  

What's kinky about New Orleans?  It depends on your definition.  I prefer not to think about it.  A lot of things happen in this city of flagrant and fragrant delights.  I don't need to be privy to all of them.  I just need to know that many itches get scratched in this kaleidoscope of a place.  Me?  I'm a man of simple tastes and uncomplicated dispositions.  I enjoy wherever I am and whatever I'm doing.  Ask Frau Schmitt.  She's the better half of this operation and she's got me all figured out.  

Beware of kinky boots on the side of the street in New Orleans.

It's been awhile since I've taken a recent picture of myself.  This one is about a month old:
Your humble narrator
As we gin the blog up into fighting trim, I'm realizing how much more there is to do to get in proper blogging shape in order to deliver all the relevant information in a timely fashion.  Don't worry.  I'm in training.  Our routine will be established soon enough and you'll know when to expect more exciting updates.

More is always better.

In the meantime, if you are thinking about visiting New Orleans, you know where you should stay: AT LA BELLE ESPLANDE.  

Monday, June 18, 2019.
-You've got two friends on Esplanade Avenue in New Orleans.

There is a physical New Orleans and then there is a New Orleans of the heart.  Keep your eyes open in this wonderful city we call home and you’ll learn what it means to fall in love with New Orleans.  We’re here for you.  You have two friends on Esplanade Avenue.    Follow our other blog, or, follow us on Facebook, subscribe to our newsletter at the bottom of this page.  Keep yourself in a New Orleans state of mind.  There is regular happy, and then there is New Orleans happy.  When you’re ready to visit, you know where to find us: we’re in the bright orange house with blue shutters.  Good memories are made on our street.

We only have five suites.  Ours is a small artisanal operation.  You know how you get the best beer from a craft brewery.  Well, you get the best hospitality from a craft hotel.  We know what we’re doing.  Let us share the real New Orleans with you, not the off-the-rack version.  Plug your dates into our calendar and see what we have available.  Plan ahead.  With only five suites we tend to fill up early.

Stay as long as you can.  No one ever says their visit to New Orleans is too long.  They always say it is too short.  The longer you are here, the more you’ll realize how much more there is to discover and explore.  There are good surprises around every corner.  New Orleans blooms with happiness.

If you have any questions, feel free to email us, that’s what we’re here for.  We look forward to meeting you in person.
Ranked the #1 place to stay in New Orleans since April 2014 for very good reasons:
Ranked the #1 place to stay in New Orleans since April 2014.

Ranked in the top 5 places to stay in the U.S. and the top 30 in the world.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

New Orleans Skies

I love the sky in New Orleans during Summer.  The sky is beautiful every season of the year in this wonderful city we call home but in Summer, because we live in the swamp, the humidity rises and rises until it condenses into the biggest, puffiest, cloudiest cumulus confections you've ever seen.  Cumulo-nimbus, too.

Another beautiful New Orleans day.
None of the photos I've chosen to illustrate todays installment feature much of what I'm talking about.  In the late morning or the early afternoon, when the clouds in the sky are at their most plumpest, I don't take pictures of them with my camera.  I study them.  They slowly expand, very slowly.  If you pay attention you can see them growing and growing.  It's a breathtaking thing to pay attention to.

I do sketch the cloudscapes.  You don't know this but, when I was much younger than I am today, I went to art school.  I was a practicing painting until I turned 40.  I am turning 53 this year.  I don't hold gallery exhibitions and I don't paint much anymore but I'm starting to get an itch in my palette thumb.  I've got some ideas for new paintings burbling up in my idea hopper.  Why?  Because I am inspired by New Orleans skies.
Daydreams and sweet dreams.

Follow men's eyes as they look to the skies---that is where the fabric of their dreams lies.  Anyone who is stoop-shouldered and spends all their time looking at the ground doesn't have inspiring dreams.  Their dreams are mired in mud and puddles and litter.  That's my opinion, at least.

Aim high.  That way, if you fall short, you'll still get somewhere.

I love clouds.  I love daydreams.  I love the New Orleans state of mind, which is mostly made up of fairy tales, daydreams, flights of fancy, and the most improbably things.  If something might be true in New Orleans, it probably is.  Nothing improbable is impossible.  It's a way of live.

Summer is the slow of year in New Orleans from a tourism viewpoint.  Very few people visit the city, much to their loss.  Yes it is hot.  Yes it is humid.  Guess what?  No one else is visiting.  The only people in New Orleans in July and August are the people who live here.  You don't have to wait in line for anything.  You don't have to make reservations beforehand.  You can come and go as you please, like you own the city---like you belong here.

You do belong in New Orleans.  There is no other city on this great green-and-blue ball we call home (third planet from the Sun) that is so welcoming, so accommodating, so happy to have you here.  Welcome to New Orleans.  Welcome to the New Orleans state of mind.

Look up.  Even the clouds are happy you are here.  There are portents in the heavens.  All signs are favorable.  Good memories are made in New Orleans.  The best memories are made at La Belle Esplanade.  Use your better intuition and get your good self down here.  Get your head nailed on street.  New Orleans cures all ills.  take it from me.  I see it happen every day.  

À votre santé,
-Your two friends at La Belle Esplanade

Sunday, June 16, 2019.

There is a physical New Orleans and then there is a New Orleans of the heart.  Keep your eyes open in this wonderful city we call home and you’ll learn what it means to fall in love with New Orleans.  We’re here for you.  You have two friends on Esplanade Avenue.    Follow our other blog, or, follow us on Facebook, subscribe to our newsletter at the bottom of this page.  Keep yourself in a New Orleans state of mind.  There is regular happy, and then there is New Orleans happy.  When you’re ready to visit, you know where to find us: we’re in the bright orange house with blue shutters.  Good memories are made on our street.

We only have five suites.  Ours is a small artisanal operation.  You know how you get the best beer from a craft brewery.  Well, you get the best hospitality from a craft hotel.  We know what we’re doing.  Let us share the real New Orleans with you, not the off-the-rack version.  Plug your dates into our calendar and see what we have available.  Plan ahead.  With only five suites we tend to fill up early.

Stay as long as you can.  No one ever says their visit to New Orleans is too long.  They always say it is too short.  The longer you are here, the more you’ll realize how much more there is to discover and explore.  There are good surprises around every corner.  New Orleans blooms with happiness.

If you have any questions, feel free to email us, that’s what we’re here for.  We look forward to meeting you in person.
Ranked the #1 place to stay in New Orleans since April 2014 for very good reasons:


The 2020 awards will be announced next January.  We hope we'll get the chance to meet you and share our part of New Orleans with you before then.  Cheers!

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Somebody get me some crawfish!!!

90 percent of the crawfish produced in the United States is produced in the great state of Louisiana.  90 percent of the crawfish harvested in Louisiana is consumed in Louisiana.  Louisianians don't mind sharing but they keep their crawfish to themselves.  The love themselves some crawfish.

Crawfish at Clesi's on Bienville Street in New Orleans, LA
Where you live, crawfish is an expensive delicacy.  In Louisiana, it's the common person's food.  It sells from between $2.00-$4.00 a pound depending on what time in the season it is.

We're reaching the end of this year's crawfish season.  The crawfish are getting hard, which means the shells are getting hard.  Boiled crawfish are served whole, in the shell.  You eat the tail meat and suck out the good stuff in the head.  There isn't much meat in the claws and it's hard work to get at it, especially this time of year.

Crawfish are tiny freshwater lobsters.  They live in the swamp.  If you travel the back roads of Plaquemines or St. Bernard or St. Charles or St. James or St. John the Baptist or Terrebonne Parishes, you'll see people netting them in the drainage ditches on the side of the road.  Wild crawfish are the best eats.  Those are free.

Crawfish are farmed, too.  In the rice paddies out by Crowley and Morgan City and Lafayette, or out in the Cajun Prairie, in the western part of southern Louisiana, the crawfish for sale are a mixture of wild-caught and farmed.  Wherever you go in southern Louisiana between late January and mid-July, crawfish are usually on the menu.

Crawfish are God's gift to this wonderful state we call home.
The side of The Community Bookstore on Bayou Road in New Orelans, LA

If you are the mood for some real American food that you can't get anywhere else in this wide-ranging and mythical country, there is only state where you get crawfish for $3.50 a pound this time of year.  It's in Louisiana.  If you're going to visit Louisiana, there is really one city to visit.  It's the city that Frau Schmitt and I are proud to call home: New Orleans.  Maybe you've heard of New Orleans?

À votre santé,
La Belle Esplanade
----You have two friends on Esplanade Avenue in New Orleans.

There is a physical New Orleans and then there is a New Orleans of the heart.  Keep your eyes open in this wonderful city we call home and you’ll learn what it means to fall in love with New Orleans.  We’re here for you.  You have two friends on Esplanade Avenue.    Follow our other blog, or, follow us on Facebook, subscribe to our newsletter at the bottom of this page.  Keep yourself in a New Orleans state of mind.  There is regular happy, and then there is New Orleans happy.  When you’re ready to visit, you know where to find us: we’re in the bright orange house with blue shutters.  Good memories are made on our street.
We only have five suites.  Ours is a small artisanal operation.  You know how you get the best beer from a craft brewery.  Well, you get the best hospitality from a craft hotel.  We know what we’re doing.  Let us share the real New Orleans with you, not the off-the-rack version.  Plug your dates into our calendar and see what we have available.  Plan ahead.  With only five suites we tend to fill up early.
Stay as long as you can.  No one ever says their visit to New Orleans is too long.  They always say it is too short.  The longer you are here, the more you’ll realize how much more there is to discover and explore.  There are good surprises around every corner.  New Orleans blooms with happiness.
If you have any questions, feel free to email us, that’s what we’re here for.  We look forward to meeting you in person.
Ranked the #1 place to stay in New Orleans since April 2014 for very good reasons:

...One of the top five places to stay in the U.S. and the top 25 in the world.



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