A week in New Orleans always does me right. My often-annual trip for Jazz Fest refuels me on every level, even if the Abita and Bourbon drain me a little. I come back with clearer goals, truer gratitude, and renewed hope in all that I do in my home, which I hold in distinct but equal reverence.
This year, I took two days off from the four-day festival to explore on foot. I’ve been through many of the city’s distinct neighborhoods over the last six years, but never before without objective. I saw the French Quarter during the day, which is not unlike being in your high school at night; I breathed in the quiet air of the Bywater, where homes and corner shops are practically interchangeable; and I reveled in the busyness of the St. John Bayou, where the horse track that hosts the music festival is located.
Instagram dominated my social media coverage during these seven glorious days. I decided to focus less on my vague monologue, less on interpretive critique, and more on just what I saw—simplicity is king in this town. And what I saw was beautiful. Mention that you’re going to New Orleans and a million and a half people will tell you where to go, what to eat, and who to ask for. I could do the same, but instead, I’ll let these sights be my recommendation. Enjoy.