Saturday, July 25, 2009
A GOOD TIME WAS HAD BY ALL
Our fast 4 day trip for our anniversary was to New Orleans. We arrived on Sunday and stayed two days and nights there before moving on up the River Road(Mississippi River) toward Baton Rouge.
Our hotel in New Orleans is the one we always stayed at before, Lafitte Guest House. Above pictures It is located in a circa 1850 house in the French Quarter. It is 3 floors plus a full attic. Our room was not our usual since another couple got to it before us in reserving.
Below is James before a huge Live Oak tree at Destrehan Plantation. Various scenes from Destrehan and Houmas House plantations are shown as well as the Destrehan house circa 1780.
Very old. At Destrehan Plantation we had a tour guide named Kelly who did a great job informing us as to the history of this fine old house, sturdy after such a many years. We also were very impressed with Don who demonstrated the art of boucillage which is how they filled in between boards in that era. Very informative guides.
At Houmas House we had lunch in their restaurant and enjoyed the extensive gardens until time for our tour which was conducted by Judy. I have never seen a tour guide like her. She sang and played the Steinway piano which is one of only 40 left in the world like it to Hush Hush Sweet Charlotte which is one of the movies filmed there, along with "A Woman Called Moses" in1979, Mandingo in 1975, Fletch Lives in 1988, Snow Wonder for Hallmark in 2006, A closer Walk in 1976, Longstreet TV series in 1971, Moon of the Wolf in 1972, and many more. She also allowed me to play some of Ode to Joy on this piano. Once inside you can see why. The circular staircase is self supporting and carves it's way to the third floor without support. They just do not build them like that anymore. And thanks to Judy for the best tour I have ever experienced in any historical home or building. She made us laugh and thanked us at the end for laughing at her jokes. It was sure a fun way of learning history.
Our stay at Nottoway Plantation is the best ending to a short get away that I can think of. Our room as you can see was superb. Always is. The turndown service was especially poignant this time since the maid and I got into a great discussion on husbands. She had recently lost hers and it seemed to fit somehow with the reason for our stay there, our anniversary, and made me appreciate him even more. She had had a good sincere husband too. I felt her great loss now she is alone.
Breakfast the next morning was quiet until the fire alarm went off in the entire house and blasted our ears until we all went outside. The cooks and waitresses went with us. One cook had burned something. This old house is well protected with fire alarms, I can tell you!!!
Our waitress was a GI bride from Germany and we especially enjoyed our talking with her.
After this we walked the grounds and while they do not compare to Houmas House, it was very enjoyable. Nottoway is always enjoyable. The white piano was no longer in the white Ballroom and no one seemed to know where it was. They had recently had a large expensive renovation of the entire house. The lower level now is the restaurant with a full bar. A very nice redo.
There is also now a museum in the lower level showing items from the plantation days. If you can see one plantation on River Road this is my favorite. At 67 rooms, it is the largest antebellum home still standing in the south. The main house is 57,000 square feet.
Above is Nottoway, to right is the famous white ballroom and to left is the master bedroom at Nottoway which is our room. Many weddings are held each year here in the white ballroom. The original owner planned this room for his many daughters to marry in. Guess it worked out for his daughters plus many other daughters in the years since.
Thanks for going along and sharing our 4 days away to celebrate our anniversary. Next year I hope to have a longer time off than 4 days. But I am not complaining since this was very refreshing time for us. Lois