Yes, yes, I’m still in New Orleans with the Friends of La Leche League on their bonding trip. Today was the day of less history and more typical tourist stuff. However, I managed to have fun.
In the morning, people mingled and bonded until time to walk (if you were fit) to the Steamboat Natchez, which is the only steam-powered paddle-wheeler in use in New Orleans.
There, we were treated/blasted to an actual steam calliope concert. It was fun to watch the steam coming out for each note.
On the boat, we had a brunch, which was adequate, and good jazz music (though one DOES weary of “When the Saints Go Marching In” around here). Since you couldn’t see a dang thing during the meal, I got out of the dining room as fast as I could to see the river.
I’ve driven over it many times, but I always have wanted to see the banks of the Mississippi, and at least I was able to see a few miles of it. The birds were cormorants, pelicans, seagulls, and some ducks I could not ID.
It was also a great time to have some private conversations with friends old and new, and that was a real bonus. People are fascinating, and LLL women really are, too. Enjoy many random photos of me and my friends.
Later That Day, Styrofoam
Some of us decided we weren’t too tired, and took an Uber through football traffic to the Mardi Gras World warehouse and float manufacture place. I spent most of my time watching the darling guide mince his way through the halls, but did learn a few things about float making and the importance of styrofoam. Since I am not a huge fan of crowds, I’m still not going to a Mardi Gras parade.
Everybody actually WAS tired, after all, so we sort of grumped our way back to the hotel, knowing we had a full night of bonding ahead of us.
My friend Janet and I decided we needed strength (she needed protein), so we went to the restaurant downstairs, which happens to feature bourbon. So, I had a flight of bourbons named after birds. Two good, one overly intense, so I ended up adding water to it.
The hotel let us have this giant Executive Lounge place, right under our room, which has been great for gatherings of the Friends. Last night we used it for what sounded like it would be tedious, but ended up being great. Maybe the bourbon helped, who knows?
Women who have been meeting every month for over 40 years in Arizona did a skit that was actually really funny about how our packing for LLL trips has changed.
Then there was impromptu sharing, and so many great stories of past conferences, mothers we helped, and friendships were shared.
It was topped off by a surprise birthday cake for our organization’s founder, Marian Tompson. She will be 90 in a few weeks, and let me tell you, her memory is better than mine. This woman glows with inner peace. I think she’s a Bodhisattva. In any case, she pretty much saved my self esteem a few years ago, so I’m happy to have seen her on the trip, and to have met her daughter, Sheila.
I truly enjoyed talking to people and getting LOTS and lots of ideas for the newsletter I edit for the organization. This trip was great for that! Look at all these people!
Today is the annual Board meeting. I just have to get through today, because tomorrow I have a SWAMP TOUR! As you may know, I like swamps.