I am pretty sure my kitchen needed some funky chicken, and this may be carrying a distinct strain of the funk.

I walked through the Quarter people watching and photographing for a bit after running into Rachaela, pronounced Ra-kay-la, the artist, at Envie. I shot a street band of younger players near the French Market and then ran into the gun protest march on Decatur Street. I took a bunch of photos of the crowd and protest signs.

It was a warm day, and the wind was starting to pick up, so I decided to walk down along the river for a bit. I crossed over the bridge and there was a small festival going on, with several food vendors and a half dozen other vendors. Three Legged Dog, a restaurant from the 400 block of Burgundy, had a crawfish boil. I talked with the owner for a while, and he suggested that the best time to come to the restaurant for crawfish was Saturdays at midnight, and to brave the lines to get to the boiler, and chat him up. He is from rural Louisiana and knows his stuff. I got a couple of pounds of bugs, and sat next to the river peeling and eating. Truly excellent, and another thing off the must-do list for the Spring.

I wandered back home and sat in the courtyard for a bit with Sue and Booth. Courtney invited me out for a burger at Cosimo’s but I went in to change shoes and missed her. I thought she was waiting, and I suppose she thought I was going to meet her there. By the time I figured it out I decided to carry on. I walked over and visited Chris, Cecile, Ellen, and the rest of the Touro Street irregulars, who had just returned from the horse races. It sounded like a fun afternoon.

I wandered on to Frenchmen Street, where I saw one street kid showing another how to crush an Oxy tab. A little depressing. I went to Thirteen for a meatball po-boy, and then listened to street music for a while, and then into dba for the last set of the early band and the first set of Cyril Neville and Swamp Funk. I ended the evening at Buffa’s with some red beans and chatting with some young women who were pretty close to the end of their evening. One was aggressively complimentary and tried to share my barstool. Interesting in a disconcerting kind of way.

Day 46

A little under the weather as late nights and a lingering cold don’t mix well, but I did make it out early and walked right into a Catholic mass being said on the street at Burgundy and Esplanade. They completed the talking part of the mass, and then marched with a brass band, waving their palms overhead as they walked like other second lines wave the white linen. I noticed a couple of parishioners ducking into Buffa’s for a cocktail to go. I’m guessing if church had been this fun in my youth I might have a different opinion of the enterprise.

I headed to Envie and sat in the Sunday rush for a little longer than usual waiting for Rachaela and the unhinged chicken. She showed up with her equally pretty husband, a darker skinned guy with green eyes and impressive dreads, and cute three year old, who probably explains the lazy Sunday morning. The piece is unusual and fun, and I walked it home and found a spot for it in the kitchen, adding to the “magical” theme for the small room. It was too late to meet the Touro Street crew at the Country Club by the time I got the art home.

I did a photo inventory of the condo so I have some chance of remembering what I have here, and perhaps to aid in project planning for the fall. Booth was pressure washing the courtyard, so I decamped with my camera through the Quarter, in no small part to try and sweat the cold away. It is kind of fun to walk the city at 80 degrees. Bourbon Street was packed with a mix of religious tourists-van loads of Christians who come to gawk at the open sin, mostly quietly, but an occasional street preacher doing his best with us heathens-and middle American tourists, groups of college kids in their packs, strippers posing for tips in the street mostly naked(call me old fashioned, but electrical tape doesn’t quite count as clothing), and the usual collection of street hustlers shining people’s tennis shoes. I continued on my way and ran into a couple of street musicians playing hip-hop keys, fiddle and bass. A group of women dancers were spontaneously dancing to the music quite well, and provided not only a good photo opportunity but a demonstration of the joy music brings to the city.

A nice bowl of ramen and a short walk down Frenchmen ended the day, with a wise choice to save the Iguanas for another night, although they have been on my short list for a while now. I am hoping I will make the Treme Brass Band on Tuesday to close out the music for the season.

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