Finally, reclining on my luxury Mexican coach en route direct to Ciudad de Mexico, I’m feeling much better about how this little pet project is playing out.
After what I hope will be the saddest Christmas Eve of my life (completely self-inflicted I completely realize), everything’s been looking up, since those three Alabama state troopers joined me in the Montgomery bus station to arrest a passenger getting off the bus I alone was getting on.
I finally arrive in New Orleans at 6 in the morning Christmas Day and head straight to my hotel. I had called the day before to let them know about my schedule, and make sure it would still be ok to check in. . . the next morning. . .
Perhaps among the reasons the Old No 77 was recently named one of the best new city hotels in America, is they were most accommodating of my irregularity (and didn’t ask too many questions). The day staff had communicated with the night staff, so I hardly even had to introduce myself. Was given late check out and a first floor room. . . where I quickly fell to enjoy the best four hours of sleep on this trip so far.
Christmas lunch beckoned!
While the Old No 77’s nationally acclaimed Caribbean creole restaurant Compere Lapin was another reason for choosing it as a homebase, I wouldn’t have opportunity to enjoy on this trip, as a Salem friend’s New Orleans’ family invited me to join them for Christmas lunch uptown.
Over roast beef and yorkshire pudding (salad after the main, cheese and fruit before dessert), I shared some of the peculiarities of my journey with my kind and curious hosts: so many questions! And me, so few answers. . .
A couple thoughts though are coming into focus:
- It’s not so much busses I like, but being chauffeured (and why I’m coming around to positive prospects of driverless cars).
- I know absolutely nothing about racism, except that I am afflicted by it.
- Choosing the hard and difficult thing is not superior to the pleasant and nice thing just because it’s hard and difficult.
The highilght of lunch, though? Cafe Brulot! A traditional New Orleans after dinner coffee, flambeed tableside.
A festive end to a festive Christmas, made especially so, by the deprivation of the nights before.
I get a ride to the station a little early to check out its mid-century murals depicting highligts of Louisiana history.
Then on to Houston, San Antonio, Laredo and Nuevo Laredo, where I had a little run-in (not serious at all) with border control I’ll write about tomorrow. . . but now I rest, basking in the plush leather of my luxury coach as the Mexican landscape passes by. . .