Saturday is when it starts. That is one of our trash collection days in Uptown New Orleans.
We put out our trashcans on Wednesdays and Saturdays. If you don’t put them out then you have to wait till the next time the big green trucks roll. You can call and schedule special pickups for large items, but I find that cash in hand helps when you want it to out of the way right at that very moment. It’s a tip…to insure promptness.
Then, suddenly something changes. After picking up our trash, Richard’s Disposal picks up our trash cans and sweeps them away and leaves us with no trashcans. Surely, there is some kind of plan to give us something else.
The next thing you know neighbors are talking to one another about trash cans. Neighbors are writing into our neighborhood association asking where their trash cans are. Neighbors respond back about what is happening. They ask who they can call about their trashcans. I call the number given out, the mailbox is full. Neighbors comment about how they can’t leave a message that they miss their trashcan and when will they get it back.
A woman comments about the $24 per month fee for the trashcan. In the middle of the trashcan discussions, a woman throws in commentary about neighbors leaving dog poop behind when they walk their dog.
I start to laugh about the absurdity of the anxiety created by a lack of a trashcan.
Monday arrives and I hear a truck and lots of noise. The new trashcans are being delivered. My house is at an intersection, one side faces one street and one side faces another street. Today is Audubon Street day, and my street is tomorrow. I state with great authority that my house faces Audubon Street and that I should get my trashcan TODAY.
The man attempts to explain and then decides to do this whole thing easy and hands over my new shiny plastic trashcan. A truly monumental Monday.
French Quarter Festival 2017
The World’s Largest Free Music Experience is right around the corner. April 6-9 marks the 37th year of the French Quarter Festival. The Festival is a four-day music event that takes place in numerous locations throughout the French Quarter. The weather in New Orleans is usually perfect, not too hot or humid!
You can stroll throughout the French Quarter and listen to one of over 1700 musician who play on 23 stages in the streets. That equates to about 400 hours of music. Wear a hat, comfortable shoes, bring a portable chair, buy a cocktail and enjoy all the music. There will be lots of New Orleans vendors on hand incase you wish to sample some of our famous food. In order to keep the festival Free, outside food and beverages are prohibited.
Parking can be challenging, so take the street car or run the RTA bus and make your life easier. Almost all of the French Quarter is handicapped accessible. The Festival gives out an event brochure which shows you a map with all the various stage locations and special events which take place the entire extended weekend. There is also a map on their website that you can download and print.
The crowd at the French Quarter Festival ranges from families with children to people getting their groove on. For more information just click on the link at the top of this post.
Last week I got my REALTOR pin after attending the Ethics class at the New Orleans Metropolitan Association of Realtors’ office. It is fun to see some of my class mates from when I took the Realtor class at Donaldson Education Services.
Donaldson teaches you how to pass the REALTOR test. It’s hard and you go take the test at a site where they watch you take the test. There is a camera pointed right at you in the cubicle, making sure that you don’t cheat. If they catch you cheating they throw you right out. At least that is what our teacher Charlene Faller tells us. I am terrified before I go to the site. What if I can’t remember the answers, what if I forget the math formulas, what if I don’t pass. How embarrassing would that be? I am actually sweating. It’s not like you can’t take the test again until you pass it, but each time you take it again, it costs $100.
I decide that I am going to pass the first time, and I study, study and study some more. Maybe I study too much, because the first couple of questions seem too easy. I feel better, maybe this is possible. Then, I get to a question and my mind blanks out. I read the question and I wonder which one of the answers should I pick because I am clueless.
I can feel the sweat forming on my forehead. Plus, to make matters worse, I need to use the ladies room. I can hear Charlene in my head saying that the restroom is way down the hall from the testing room and they give you 5 minutes. Charlene describes how she wore sneakers so she could run to the restroom and get back in time. I run to the restroom and make it back in time!
I finish the test. I am the only person left in the room. I push the button which tallies your score and I watch the screen for the results. The word PASS comes up. I jump up and do the victory dance just like in the Rocky movie. I could care less what the test watchers think. I Pass!
I get the official pieces of paper that show my scores and I can now move forward in this thing called Real Estate. I drive to the Donaldson School to share my victory with my teacher Charlene. I walk down the center of the room with my arms up in the air and announce that I pass the test.
I tell this story to my classmate who is right beside me in our New Member Orientation and Ethics class. We both put on our REALTOR pins and celebrate our new beginning.
During Mardi Gras there are certain throws that everyone wants to catch. One of the prized throws is the show bracelet from the Krewe of Muses. Muses is an all female group and they are famous for their shoes. They take old shoes decorate them and then throw them during their parade. They also throw a multi-color shoe bracelet. That is a picture of one. Isn’t that just the cutest thing? Well, in New Orleans local women will fight to get one of those shoe bracelets, especially before their parade. It is a little like showing off.
I’m lucky because my neighbor Debbie Lee is a member and she makes sure that I always get the shoe bracelet. I wear it like a badge of honor on my wrist each day. I drive down the street with my arm out the window just so people can see the bracelet. I have had women at stop lights ask me where they can get it. How much fun is that?
Walking into Mardi Gras World you might hear children laughing and clapping especially when they find out they will be getting King Cake as part of their tour. It is a magical place filled to the rafters with larger than life characters. You’ll see King Kong standing right beside Winston Churchill or Cleopatra.
For over 70 years, the craftsmen and artists have been building signature parade floats for the local Mardi Gras Krewes. A Krewe is a like a club. Each Krewe has a King and a Queen who rein over their Krewe for a year. Some Krewes have gorgeous and elaborate balls with big name entertainment. The Krewe members pay fees and these fees fund the costumes and floats that you see during Carnival season. Mardi Gras is an actual day and the whole season is referred to as Carnival. Most of the time locals just say “ Happy Mardi Gras”.
When you take the Mardi Gras World tour you’ll learn about the history of Mardi Gras in New Orleans and then you get a chance to walk through the float den, where the artists make the actual floats.
It all started with Roy Kern, a local artist-turned-sign-painter who worked his way through the Depression. Roy painted names and signs on the bows of freighters and barges.
Unable to pay his mother’s medical bills. Roy’s son, Blaine offered to paint a mural in the hospital for payment,
The mural caught the eye of a surgeon. The surgeon was the captain of a Mardi Gras Krewe. Blaine was invited to design and build floats for his Krewe, and Kern Studios was officially founded.
Through the years, Kern Studio received numerous requests to get a behind the scene look at upcoming floats for Mardi Gras. Mardi Gras World opened in 1984 to provide a fun first glance of the upcoming parade floats. Each year about 150,000 people come to experience Mardi Gras World from school buses filled with children all the way to Seniors.
It is a good idea to call ahead for your tour and you can get more details at mardigrasworld.com or call 1-800-555-5555.