N’awlins Part One

When you fly into New Orleans from Detroit, which is where my connecting flight was coming from, you come in over the swamp. I’ve always thought that coming in over Boston harbor was the scariest, the water right there and everything, but somehow coming in right over the swamp freaked me out just a little bit more. I was glad, once it was over, despite the humidity and the fact that I hadn’t packed anything even mildly casual to wear, to be on the ground.

But, I’m getting ahead of myself. Briefly, let’s discuss getting here.

Dad dropped me off at the Manchester airport. I had my backpack and one carry-on bag. I haven’t been on a plane since May 2001, so I was somewhat unprepared for the security screening. I was mostly good, but I didn’t have my shoes off when it came my turn. Everyone ahead of me had been ready, but I hadn’t. I was a little embarrassed.

The flight to Detroit was cool. I was all alone in my row. I had a window seat. From that window seat I tried to see if I could see my house. I don’t think that I did. When we got higher up and further west, I marveled at how the land looked like patchwork quilt of green and brown. Spots of civilization were spread out. It was flat and beautiful.

Up in the clouds, I got giddy at the fluffiness of them. When I sipped from my gingerale, the fizz of the drink rising off of the ice tickled my upper lip.

I was in Detroit for an hour. I ate a hamburger, a double-cheeseburger to be precise, and I wondered if I’d flown over 8 Mile.

The flight from Detroit to New Orleans was crowded. The guy next to me was throwing elbows in his sleep. I stared out the window and listened to my iPod.

For dinner, my boss and I went to this place down the street. I had a po boy, which is basically a heaping sandwich. It was good. The boss and I walked down Bourbon Street and laughed at the cover band playing AC/DC and Bryan Adams back to back. That street was an experience, man, a real trip.

Back here, I’ve been working on my final paper for the semester. Famous authors have stayed here at the Hotel Monteleone. There’s a bookcase in the lobby honoring some of them. I hope to have a book in there one day.

Always ambitious, aren’t I?