Monday, 8 April 2013

Spring Break...........


Spring Break gave me a week off from school and I headed out of Colorado with another Victorian exchangee from Pakenham to New Orleans. Leanne is in Denver this year so we planned to fly out the Monday morning for Louisiana.

The Friday school broke there was a massive storm system that moved across the mountains and Denver. It did not hit GJ, however I had planned to drive across the mountains to Denver on Sunday morning. I had not done this trip yet and was hesitant to attempt my first time with the storm. So on Saturday night I decided to book a ticket on the train. I was dropped off Sunday morning all ready to head to Denver. However as I was buying a bottle of water, I realised I had not only left my license in the car due to Friday social night after school but I had also left my passport on the counter at home! As we were flying to NO, I kinda needed the identification! So my train travel was no longer possible - by the time I had gone home 20 minutes and come back I would miss the departure :-( So I ended up putting my bags into my car and heading off to Denver via the snow packed, wet and icy roads!

Despite my nerves, it was not as bad as I expected. About an hour in I started to get some snow flurries on and off, but they never lasted more than 10 minutes and were not very heavy - I still had visibility. About 2 hours in the roads started to stay covered with snow, but there was a drive line that I followed. The trip took me 4 1/2 hours to get to Leanne's place in Denver (with a 20 min food stop), which is a good time considering I was able to go the speed limit most of the time. Thanks must also go to my Dad who taught me to be a careful and confident driver in all conditions!

Despite the slightly disrupted beginning, I found myself in New Orleans on Monday afternoon. The city is an easy city to get around and has an interesting history I loved learning about. We did a few different tours and spent a lot of time wandering around the river area, main city centre and the French Quarter district.

We spent one morning walking around the oldest cemetery in the city. It was great as we heard a lot about the history and why they have tombs from our guide. The people can't bury in the ground as the water table is so high and the caskets would just float to the top again. So they built tombs where the bodies were laid to rest.

Another interesting tour we went on was a plantation tour. We visited the Laura Plantation, which is an old Creole plantation. I learnt a lot about the history of the area here and about the Creole people. We followed this up by going five minutes down the road to Oak Alley Plantation, which has a gorgeous oak lined alley leading to the main house. The oaks are over 300 years old - there was a second alley leading from the back of the house. This second alley is the 'baby' alley with oaks of approximately 150 years old!

I have always wondered about what it would be like to see the swamp bayou area of America. With this in mind, I took a ride on an airboat - yes, those ones with the fan engine on the back! It was very loud but extremely cool. This was one of my favourite times of the week - the scenery was so different to what I have seen anywhere else. The photos don't really capture the light but they give a good idea of the weird and wonderful environment!

Bourban Street was an entertaining experience! We were there early on our first night looking for dinner. The street is all blocked off so it becomes kind of a mall type area apart from the cross streets. After dinner we walked most of the way along the street and back. As the night got later the more interesting it became! One different aspect of New Orleans is that you can buy a drink in one bar and take it outside with you as you  move to the next bar. Or, even more incredibly, there are drive through daquari stores!! Yes, drive throughs! Seriously!

Overall, New Orleans was a wonderfully relaxing four days. It was fantastic to wander around a new city and take in a different history. The buildings were exactly as I expected - particularly in the French Quarter! I had a great time and would love to visit again in the future. I have included a lot more pictures with captions on a seperate page on this blog. Check out the pages links on the top right.


The Easter Bunny managed to find me via Australia Post!! I recieved these in my mailbox on Good Friday - what great timing! It was so good to have chocolate from home again! Chocolate here is just not quite the same :-) Easter Sunday I celebrated with a group of new friends at a cafe in Downtown Grand Junction. Following brunch I then enjoyed my awesome Aussie eggs during the afternoon. It was a great way to finish a wonderful Spring Break week!

Other March Happenings

I helped celebrate a birthday with another dress up party - 1980s style! The music teacher at school invited me to her party and so I neon-ed it up in an 80s style outfit. :-)
Aside from the above, March was quiet as I spent two weeks being sick :-( I fought off the yucky American germs as long as I could - but they finally wore me down! Two weeks and three packets of cold and flu later I was on the other side. It took me another week to really recover fully, but thankfully this week was when I was in New Orleans so I was relaxing for a good reason!

The fun continues........

I can't believe it's April - 7 more weeks until I am on summer break and my sister arrives! Yay! I'll be back keeping you up to date shortly. Stay safe and enjoy life, whatever you are up to! :-D
Keep smiling,

1 comment:

  1. There are also some scenery photos from the drive home on the miscellaneous travel page. Enjoy!!
    ~ Candice