Shannon and I took the weekend off last weekend to head to NOLA for a few reasons:  1) to go to New Orleans (though you NEVER need a reason to go to New Orleans!!), 2) my sister offered us two tickets to the Saints/Texans game, and 3) Matt Nathanson and Vanessa Carlton were playing a gig at the House of Blues.

I had to work Friday night for Rox Star down at Cypress Bayou Casino/Shorty's, so we got a late start on Saturday, not leaving the house until after 2pm.  This was our view through the top of the Jeep!

We took Highway 90 all the way to the West Bank (when headed to the Quarter, we always take 90 to the West Bank....  haven't had a problem yet!), crossed the Crescent City Connection and went straight to the hotel.  We stayed at the Wyndham Baronne (it was only one of two hotels with rooms available for a decent price!).  Nice hotel, but when you are in New Orleans, the hotel is the least of one's worries!

That evening we met up with my sister and her beau at the Checkered Parrot on Royal to watch the LSU game (and catch the ULL updates on the bottom of the screen).  After ULL and LSU beat their opponents, we braved the French Quarter for the blinding sights and deafening sounds.  We ducked into Felix's Restaurant and Oyster Bar (don't do it!) for some food (+/-), and then moseyed back to the hotel room by 1am to get rested up for the game!

We got to the tailgating around 10:45, hosted by some of Shannon's Alexandria friends (do it!), had a few beverages and some finger food, and then got into this line:

It seems that, at another game in the NFL the week prior, someone decided to enter with a taser and tried to jump-start a few people, so now there is a tickler at each entrance, looking for electronic contraband.

(I told my patter-downer that he hadn't checked my thigh area good enough, but he declined to pat me down again...).  So, as is so common in America, the good have to suffer for the bad.  This line was excruciatingly slow to move.

We arrived at our seats with perfect timing:  the New Orleans Saints were just getting introduced, and Steve Gleason handled the coin toss and initiated the ceremonial "Who Dat" chant (the strongest I have heard since I have been going to the games..... gave me the frissons!!).

The game was great (Shannon and I went crazy on the stadium food;  we had hot dogs, nachos, beverages and chili-cheese fries!), New Orleans beat the Houston Texans 40-33, and we returned to the parking area to continue the tailgating duties.  (There were some stumblers!!)

From the game, we went to Evelyn's Place for some chicken and sausage gumbo (don't do it!!), and Shannon had the muffaletta sandwich (she said it was good.. I don't do olives).


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From there, we went to the HOB to see Vanessa Carlton and  Matt Nathanson, which was a great show!!

After the concert, we crossed Decatur from HOB to have a late-night snack at the Mediterranean restaurant (do it), and then we carried each other back to the room (we were in food overload shock!!).

Monday, after having bad experiences at the French Quarter restaurants, I put a plea on Facebook for someone to tell me where the "good, non-touristy" food was in NOLA.  My buddy (and true-blooded Yat) Matt Romagosa came to the rescue:  he texted "Parkway Bakery, Wet Roast Beef Poboy" to my cell.

It's not often that Shannon vows her love for a man (other than myself, of course), but when she took the first bite of her poboy, she said "Text Matt and tell him that I love him".  Delicious!

Then we drove home.   End of story.