Thursday, May 10, 2012

5/06: We toured the Jungle Gardens of Avery Island. I guess we were expecting more; it is a man-made area, not natural, with bamboo and other trees and flowers brought in, man-made lagoons with alligators. They advertise all of these beautiful flowering trees and flowers. Evidently we were at the wrong time of year for that.There is a Buddha though that is very large and old that was a gift to the founder. Bird City is an area where egrets nest. That was very noisy. From there we went to the Tabasco factory. We didn't tour it but took pictures outside and went to the gift shop. We decided to go on to Baton Rouge since it was getting late. Stayed at a Cracker Barrel.

5/07: Having an issue with leaking air, so after some internet searching and phone calls, found a place for parts. Was only a few miles from Cracker Barrel, and was only around $20, so not bad. We also stopped at Home Depot and picked up a few things to keep on hand. We decided to go south to New Orleans via the Mississippi river road and see some plantations. We were going to tour the St. Joseph's Plantation but for some reason it was closed, so we went about a quarter mile and the Oak Alley Plantation was open. As you come up to it, there are 300-year-old oak trees in front of  it, towering over the road. It cost $18 each to tour it. They give tours every half-hour. It's got an interesting history to it, a few owners, but after the Civil War it was left empty for 5 years and cattle were in it so destroyed a lot of the main floor. So, very little is original any more; only 2 pieces of furniture. There is a levee along the Mississippi so you can't see the river. There is a spot right by Oak Alley Plantation where people can walk up and take pictures, which we did.

From there we followed the river on down to Westwego to the Bayou Segnette State Park. It was $32 the first night, $26 after that. We figured we'd wait until the morning to decide if we were going to spend another night or not. After getting to our spot, Curt decided he better dump (no sewer at site, but a dump station, so he did that and came back and set up. It was getting kind of dark, but decided to go for a walk around the campground. I guess there were issues after a hurricane, but it a very nice place, well kept-up. We had a wooden deck beside our area. On our walk we passed an armadillo, about the size of a small dog. I didn't even see it, it was on the edge of the road. Scared the daylights out of me when Curt shown his flashlight on it!

5/08: We decided to stay another day there and catch up on some things. Washed clothes in the morning. Still not impressed with the lack of drying ability. We drop the Jeep to the French Quarter in New Orleans, found a parking area near the water. Should've had a pedometer on; we walked for hours. First we went to the French Market and flea market area. Then on to the River Walk, into shopping stores and ended up on Bourbon Street. What an eye-opening experience! We were getting a little nervous already on that street and decided to take a different one. Luckily there are police cars all over. Cost $12 for parking for 3 hours.

5/09: Instead of taking I-10, we decided to take a highway that went the southern route through the bayou. And then I wouldn't have to go over large bridges again, or so I thought. I don't mind normal bridges (what I call normal for North Dakota), but these bridges are so high because ships have to get underneath them. I don't like being a half-mile in the air, sorry.  But, of course, if there's a river, there's a bridge. Some of them were kind of narrow too on our scenic road. We crossed in to Mississippi (and their roads are so much better than Louisiana's).  Stayed at Magic River Campground in Long Beach, Mississippi. It's a Passport America campground, so only paid $28 for 2 nights. Called the UPS Store to get our mail sent here since we have a legal letter we need to take care of.  I think there's only 3 other campers here, and they look like they've been here a while. It's a nice place. Curt worked on the basement doors, got the grill out so I could grill hamburgers and potatoes. First time we've grilled since we left.

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