Day 6.

I woke up in Chattanooga, nervously excited for driving to New Orleans, even though it was going to be a 7.5 hour drive. Longest I’ve done at in one stretch so far. But first, breakfast at Aretha Frankenstein’s (!!) with Eric and Brian.

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Apparently, the record for eating their pancakes is 7 in 20 minutes. I wasn’t impressed until I saw them. I couldn’t put 7 of those thick things in my mouth in only 20 minutes/TWSS.

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I drove through Alabama, planning to stop for coffee at Octane but in reality stopping for a popsicle and coffee.

 

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Through Mississippi, my legs started aching and I started wishing I could take a nap and it started raining and I was sad I couldn’t be out photographing the lightning that filled the sky.

And then, New Orleans. I started getting that feeling in my stomach as I drove into town. Checked into my hotel, relaxed for a few minutes, and then headed out to find food and mild trouble. Found both!

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Palm trees. Sigh.

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I think I’m going to go to the cemeteries today.

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The combination of French Quarter architecture and the sheer amount of people around, I couldn’t wait to just walk around and shoot everything. The odds of photographing something strange went way up. I went to Acme, the restaurant the recruiter had mentioned to me doing our interview and maybe it was some quirky New Orleans fate, but I got to skip the line out front because I was by myself and there was one seat at the bar. And I got seated next to a man by himself also. And after 7.5 hours in a car by myself (and maybe feeling flirty), I was kinda chatty. Turns out he was working for a band on tour, and this was his one night off. We drank beer that tasted like heaven from plastic cups and ate amazing food. We talked about my trip and jobs and family and his wife and my boyfriend and it seemed like a given that we were going to wander around a little more with each other. He walked with me down Bourbon Street and we looked at strippers and I told him that I’d like to try because a stripper for a night just to see how well I would do and he asked one of the doormen if I could but apparently you have to fill out a lot of paperwork which kind of eliminates the excitement of spontaneity. Oh well. I’d be a clumsy stripper anyway. (TheClumsyStripper.com is available, by the way.)

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TEMPTED.

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He walked me back to my hotel, I edited photos, and went to sleep. New Orleans, already giving me stories.

Today: Wandering everywhere and eating everything in New Orleans.

***

Morale: Very High

Food Rations: Cajun and Creole and Southern, oh my.

Soundtrack: Rocky Votolato, Burning My Travels Clean

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