Pronounced: New Or-lins, not New Or-leans. Or how all of the locals say it…..Nawlins.
This city, let me tell you what.
I just got back from my first-time-ever trip to New Orleans. I bought a plane ticket last minute and didn’t really know what I was getting myself into or what to expect.
I arrived at the MSY airport and everyone was friendly. I was surprising my friend from Germany there. So I had a couple of hours to venture around the airport before she arrived from Frankfurt. People are willing to start conversation and it rocks.
What I learned on my drive to where I was staying:
- Taxi drivers don’t care about you getting car sick.
- The houses are beautiful – each one is so unique.
- Streets are filled with people no matter what time of day.
- Holy fuckin’ seafood restaurants.
- There are Mardi Gras beads EVERYWHERE. And it is fantastic.
The bead tree on Tulane University’s campus.
Listen. It’s hard to describe New Orleans to someone who has never been there. The atmosphere this city holds is unbelievable. So this post is going to be all over the place.
First, the people. The people in New Orleans are friendly, hilarious, and full of soul. They will talk to you, they will thank you for visiting their city, and they’ll probably dance on Bourbon Street with you. They are incredible. Unlike any other city.
Second, can we talk about the New Orleans sayings? You know, the typical sayings and unique phrases you hear people say that are only found in New Orleans? You probably wouldn’t understand them if you visited there – like I didn’t at first, but you get the hang of it when you hear it everyday.
- “Ya mom’n’em” – This really just means your immediate family. People will ask “How’s ya mom’n’em?” Yep. Awesome.
- “Po-boy” – Not an actual poor boy. This is a signature dish of NOLA, which is a French bread sandwich full of deliciousness.
- “Hurricane or Grenade” – These are two of the alcoholic beverages that you can find all over Bourbon Street. Served in special glasses.
- “Where y’at?” – This doesn’t literally mean where you are. This is their way of saying “How ya doing?” Just answer “Awrite”. 😉
- “Making groceries” – AKA grocery shopping.
Third, the foooooood. Uh, yep. The food in New Orleans is incredible. This city is filled with the best seafood you’ll ever taste. Don’t get me started on the crawfish, crab, good jambalaya, gumbo, etc. NOLA has kickass burger joints, desserts, breakfast places, and more. It’s killer.
I went to a restaurant called “Superior Seafood” and had an amazing dish. And even tried fried alligator as an appetizer….what?!
Fourth, you can’t help but dance around the streets of New Orleans. There is live music on every corner. And real talent. Jazz bands, acoustic, people who make music out of plastic crates and wooden spoons.
These guys were one of my favorites to watch.
When you’re in New Orleans, there is no doubt that it is an absolute necessity to visit Bourbon Street. The atmosphere and vibes this area gives off is unreal. You can’t not smile.
Transportation is easy. There’s street cars and taxis, and for the ones who don’t mind a little calorie burning – you can walk!
Take a street car down St. Charles, see all of the breathtaking homes. Walk around the French Quarter. Grab a Po-boy for lunch and snag a Grenade on Bourbon. Visit the River Walk and stop in for shopping at the mall. Grab a coffee and some beignets at Cafe de Monde, and dance the streets of New Orleans for hours on end. Maybe catch the sunset at City Park at the end of the day.
This city is full of life, color, and great vibes. Your experience there will cling to you forever.
Thanks for having me, New Orleans.
I’ll be back.
XOXO, AS KIM TRAVELS • KIM CHARTERS!