Friday, January 27, 2012

Santa Rosa Island

Traveling on I-10 to and from New Orleans,
I knew I would be close to the Gulf
in an area I've wanted to visit for 30-some years...
beautiful Pensecola Beach.
But I didn't know if I wanted to add even a little more time
onto my already 9 hour drive
to make that detour to see Gulf waters once again.

Then after a message from an old St. Pete friend,
Mike Courtney,
 stating that I would miss
"in my opinion, the most beautiful beach in the world"
my decision was made.

A portion of the island is dedicated to a park
 that gave me 7+ miles of driving between white sand dunes
bounded by the Santa Rosa Sound to my left and the Gulf to my right.
I had this stretch of road to myself..
it was quite heavenly!

And as an added bonus,
I got to stop by and meet Michael's artistic wife, Lou.
and where I got a tour of the historic home that
they restored together.

I could live in this bathroom!

So, you can see, the detour was worth it!

Thanks, Michael & Lou, for the encouragement.
I hope it's not another 30 years
before I make it to your Panhandle again!!!

Monday, January 23, 2012

A Day With HOPE Is Never In Vain

There is a 12 year old granddaughter in my life...

12! years! old!

And while in New Orleans we had some
 Nana/Hopers time together.

But "Hopers" isn't so fitting any more.

In the few short months since we've seen each other last,
this little girl has grown up!

Inside and out!

Time to drop the "rs".

But, thankfully,
that little girl playfulness is still there

Right under the suface,
exposing itself spontaneously, frequently, joyously.

Imbedded forever in the spirit
of this young lady.

So, Hope,
until our next time together

continue your joie de vivre,

 and I can't wait to see you again!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Geography Lesson

A Tennessee Walker
named Montana

who was born in Florida

now living in Louisiana
meeting a girl from Missouri

and it was love at first sight.

(photos taken by a girl from Jersey)

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

New Orleans - Day Two

With Michelle's photography conference
starting at the Convention Center,
(which is why this trip came about in the first place)
Charlie, Hope and I
were footloose and fancy free to do some exploring.

The city is pretty easy to navigate.
Known as the Crescent City,
it's nestled in the crescent of the river
with huge Lake Pontchartrain bordering its north.
So almost any way you head, you'll run into
water before getting too lost.

Also, their public transportation is wonderful.
$3.00 a head per day to ride the trolleys,

and/or buses.
And there is a ferry that goes across the Mississippi...
pedestrians are free, cars $1.00.

Something I loved to do as a child was to ride
the Staten Island Ferry!
So try to imagine my delight
riding a ferry across the Mississippi!
(It doen't take much to make me happy :)
And we rode it 4! times

I have decided that tugboats are officially my favorite...
...and I am getting my full of them here in NOLA,
but I'll spare you all of the pictures I've taken so
far of the varieties navigating the waters...
just giving you a taste :)

Our ferry trip landed us in Algiers Point
This is a common sight throughout New Orleans... even though this pic was taken in Algiers

where we strolled around, and where we were wished

...and where we ate at the
Tout De Suite Cafe.
Great music with an equally great hamburger!

One of our trolley rides took us to
Audubon Park across from Tulane / Loyola Universities.
Alot of activities going on simultaneously....
a walking/bike/skateboarding path being used rivaling rush hour traffic,
 playgrounds with a ton of kids,
 ultimate frisbee being played,
benches being used by people reading books (not a kindle in sight),
etc. etc, etc.
City parks are really a great place to visit!
(Hope and I actually made a return visit the next day... all in hopes of getting a turn on the swing!)

And Charlie almost jumped out of his seat when he spied
a cheesecake restaurant on our ride to the park.
So it was not surprising that we had to make a stop on the way back
to the French Quarters in order to indulge.
But the big question, "Which cheesecake to choose!?!

Our day was about to end,
so it was back to the ferry via trolley to pick up the car,
which was on the other side of the Mississippi.

I'll have you know, it takes a real man who can do
"Sing, sing, sing on a hot summer's day..."
with his daughter while we waited :)

And after our wonderfully spontaneous day,
we headed back to our home away from home.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Common Denominator

What do
The Mallard Family,
a Famous Street,
Decorated Balconies,
The Mighty M.I.S.S.I.S.S.I.P.P.I.,
a Basilica,
Street Performers,
Exceptional Food,
and me with a camera have in common...








Be back soon with more from La.