We started the Mardi Gras season off right – eating a doberge king cake and watching some floats slowly drive down the road behind a police escort, heading from their den to the lineup.
The first parade of the season that we attend, generally, is Cleopatra, and the children were wild with excitement on the night. They all dressed in costumes for the parade, and as this one tends to be more thinly attended than some of the later ones, we caught a LOT of stuff.
Cleopatra was great – good weather, good haul, the boys had a blast, and the first parade of the season is always fun. By the end, we’re dragging a little bit, but at this point we were still fresh and excited.
Next day was my day to walk in Chewbacchus, with the Wonder Woman krewe.
The weather for this one was less ideal, though it could’ve been worse. I’m sporting a long sleeved shirt under my bustier in part because it was pretty darn cold, and it also misted with rain for significant chunks. But it wasn’t freezing, and it never out and out poured, and everybody came out to watch even with the rain. Really good times.
For Chewbacchus, the plan was that we would all meet up at a friend’s house near the start, and finalize our costumes while drinking some wine. It sort of worked this way – but our uber ride took almost an hour given the parading going on everywhere, so the drinking/chatting/costuming time was shortened to a zip-through-the-potty, tease-your-hair-and-let’s-go kinda thing.
We all showed up at our friend Christina’s home in the Bywater, oohed and aahed at each other’s costumers, and then headed out in a troop down to the lineup point, where we proceeded to stand around for a couple of hours, getting rained on and looking at all of the amazing creativity on display.
The route was a couple of miles, through the Marigny and the Bywater, two very trendy New Orleans neighborhoods (Wikipedia calls them “off-beat”). It was absolutely packed with people of all ages, out to see the creativity of the sci-fi nerd parade. I pressed cheap plastic trinkets into dozens of hands, pranced to the music, and occasionally drank from a flask stored in my bustier (I did not drink much, you had to carry everything on your person, of course). I took way too many selfies.
It was a really fun night. At the end of the route, we stopped at a bar for burgers and a beer, then took an uber home. Such an absolute blast. We’re doing it again next year, but we’re going to bead and light up bustiers so we will glow like most of the rest of the parade.
The next parade was on the following Wednesday – Druids, the krewe the Prof rides in. (Note the Mardi Gras countdown clock on that website.) I have no pictures of Druids because it was pouring rain. We went out, like troopers, to see Daddy’s parade, but we headed home immediately after. The Prof invited his dad to join him on the float this year, so they went together while his mom (my MIL, Dee Dee) watched with us. I felt bad that it was such miserable, cold and rainy weather for this one, but it rains on Druids a lot.
The next night was Muses, and we had much better weather, so we got to show a little more of what the typical Mardi Gras is like. We set up chairs on the sidewalk, a little elevated from the street (due to a tree root, mostly), and enjoyed the block party feel of Magazine street right before a parade.
An older man, solo, wearing a Vietnam Vet jacket and looking perhaps homeless, perhaps just down on his luck, ended up standing near us. And Craig, for some unknown reason, decided they were best friends and went over and snuggled up to him. I kept an eye, but the man seemed pleased for the connection, and not at all dangerous, so Craig sat there a while with him on a tree root, leaning back on the guy. It was really touching.
Eventually, the man wandered a little further down the road to smoke a cigarette, and Craig came back with us. It was a sweet, New Orleans kind of moment – unusual social connection is part of why I love this weird place.
I have run out of time/steam, and so we will have one more Mardi Gras update – probably just in time for Easter. My work informing you people about our day to day boring lives just NEVER STOPS!! 😉