One month party

Tuesday was the one-month mark for me in New Orleans. I threw myself a celebratory nap and then ate some Oreo Cakesters and crossed my fingers that I would be able to go back this week.

Not so.
No power.
Still Sunday.
There are, like, 200 buildings here. Two of the only four damaged buildings on campus are schools of Social Work and Public Health. Those are the kinds of odds I live inside.

Yesterday the Grampies (that’s plural for Grandparents) left for North Carolina to check on the house-for-sale and hurry back before Hanna, Ike, Josephine and Unnamed threatened Flordia again, so I had to relocate. This put me on the road to Jackson, MS at 4:30—FOUR THIRTY—in the morning. It was a gloomy ride. Honestly, I haven’t seen the sun in days and I was passing busloads of Mississippians who were being escorted back to their coastal homes.

I was totally jealous.

The thought of not being home for another 5 days, along with a lack of Starbucks on Mississippi highway 49, along with being awake in another country’s time zone, along with not being able to get out from under the clouds of Gustav for the life of me, I almost cried. Almost. But it being so early and all, I slipped into a coma instead and pulled over for an hour and a half at Cups, and espresso shop.

I am now safely in Jackson, coma free, and staying with Sprinky’s sister’s nanny family. Strange? I know, but they offered and I said yes. I wanted to see Tulane’s shelter at Jackson State and also check up on Christy.  She just moved here last month and is still figuring things out. Together, we have located an Indian restaurant, a cute coffee/smoothie shop and a bike trail. Saturday we’ll be going to the circus. I do what I can.

Thanks to all the friends and fam who offered to host—Lawlers, Pam, Dian, Elaine’s friend’s sister.  It’s heartwarming that people love to love.

I should be home on Sunday.
Notice I’ve started calling NOLA home? My crazy grandma (the famous one) pointed that out to me.  Home. It has a nice ring to it.

PS- Baby Lil turned 5 months this week!


Rooftop pools.

Honesty, I was just trying to get to the mall.

But then I saw a Starbucks in the Sheraton on Canal St. and ducked in for my little icy nonfat mocha. You know me, the Starbucks led to the spectacular lobby, which led to the elevators, which led to the balcony, which led to the courtyard, which led to the pool deck, which required a hotel key, which I did not have. But it got me thinking. Hotels are the key to success if you live in a hospital-ish dorm with no immediate pool access, and they create the best avenue to fake yourself into the lifestyles of the rich and famous. Hotels could be my new car dealerships.

So today I went through every major hotel on Canal street to scope out the pool situation.

Harrah’s was a fabulous maze of casino and food courts and shopping areas which left me feeling very nostalgic for my annual Brookie-Dad-Sprinky-Mylissa weekend in Vegas. It would have been happening next weekend had it not been preempted by all these blasted school acceptances and weddings and unemployments. Next year.

I got a tiny bit braver and asked the front desk for a hotel map. Then I asked where the fitness room was, and then where the pool was. The concierge gave me a tour. She also told me that Harrah’s has an arrangement with Lowe’s next door to use their rooftop pool for $10. I just had to notify the bellman.

Harrah’s eventually wound around to Fulton Street, which was a pedestrian walkway with cute little outdoor cafés and restaurants, and Fulton Street wound around to the Hilton. Counting on the same success with Hilton as with Harrah’s, I asked the concierge for a general layout of the hotel. We matched the streets with the map and located the main pool deck on the third floor. I thanked her and made for the escalator, befriending a Spanish-speaking caterer on the way who escorted me to the pool deck, thrilled that I could speak in Spanish, as he could only understand about 7 words of English.

I examined every square inch of the Hilton, which was connected to the mall, and discovered that while the small pool on the riverside deck requires a room key, the main pool is open and available to all who can find it! Success!

I spent the rest of the afternoon at the pool, and then hopped a streetcar to the Canal St. shoppes, where I had planned to see a movie for $5.50. But then Macbook crashed. Daggers!

I started to walk home to figure out how to un-crash it, but a pop-up rainstorm landed me back in the Sheraton lobby in a plush leather chair on the phone with the Mac help desk listening to soft jazz and piano music from the bar. We reinstalled the installation disc over the phone and all was resorted, thank GOD. Me with no macbook? I would sooner die.

*It crashed again. Gotta go. You might not hear from me for a while- tomorrow I have to give little Macbook to the Mac surgeons.