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World Trip 2011

Back in the USA

USA | Friday, 26 August 2011 | Views [389]

So, our first night back in the U.S.A. was in a small town named after my dad – Raymondville, Texas.  We basically stopped there because we had already been driving for 9 hours and were pretty tired after crossing the border.  We paid far more than we were used to, stayed in a hotel, it had a king size bed and air conditioning so it may as well have been heaven.  Ironically because it was late in the evening, our first meal back in the states was at McDonalds. 

The next day we were off yet again, making some distance crossing the big state of Texas.  We settled on spending a couple of days in Galveston, Texas.  We were inspired by a couple of nice generous Texans we met in Rio Nexpa during our time in Mexico.  Galveston was the site of hurricane Rita in 2006.  It was interesting to see the geography of the area.  It is a very flat barrier island made of sand.  It didn’t stand a chance against the hurricane.  Residents were evacuated and there is still evidence of the billions of dollars of devastation.  We stayed in the state park camping for a couple of very hot nights and basically spent our days trying to escape the heat.  We tried some very tasty Texas BBQ, highly recommended for anyone who is ever in the area.  And we enjoyed the southern hospitality and the accent as well.  We got to feast our eyes on as many pickup trucks as one could imagine.  I would definitely go back.  We did avoid the major mainland cities.

Then we were off to New Orleans, Louisiana.  We got there on a Saturday night and took advantage of the weekend action.  We made our way down to Bourbon Street, as you do, the night of our arrival after checking into our hostel.  Bourbon Street is the most frequented area by tourists in New Orleans...it includes everything from karaoke bars, to dance clubs, to strip clubs.  It is not the place to go to see the real New Orleans but if you are looking for a good time, this is it.  Taking the St. Charles streetcar into town is always a nice way to start out our adventure.  On our arrival at the intersection of Canal and Bourbon St. There was some live music to welcome us and of course, dancing on the street.  Not only is the city full of history, culture, and personality.  It also has amazing architecture and friendly locals.  It didn’t take us long to find a pub or two to get a drink.  Not long into our night we were feeling extra friendly and chatty and met a fabulous couple visiting from Houston – Bryan and Lily.  What a great couple to stumble upon and continue our Saturday night journey with.  We went from bar to bar, enjoying drinks and good conversation, a dance here and there.  We even got friendly with the horses that the cops were riding...they must get that all the time.  Although we set out to have a fun but mellow night we didn’t make it back to our hostel until 4am.  It’s not often we say that anymore.  We certainly did pay the price the next day...After not accomplishing a single thing except getting out of bed the following day.  We made the effort to see some sights on Monday.  We toured around the French Quarter from Jackson square to Cafe du Monde, to the French Market district to Royal Street and everything in between.  We got a very good feel for the city and its history that day.  We fortunately ran into our new buddies from the other night and enjoyed a good lunch and great conversation before they headed back to Houston.  What a great way to spend a day.  Even managed to work in a dinner later on at a Creole inspired Taqueria...first time having anything resembling Mexican food since returning to the U.S.  We spent our last night in town having a fine dining experience on the shores of the Mississippi river and a wander along Frenchmen Street.  With an earful of jazz and full bellies we returned to our hostel to have a good sleep before the long drive ahead to our next destination state of Florida.  

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