Mardi Gras Pt.I

'Tis the season ya'll! True to New Orleans, celebrating Mardi Gras is a two week long affair. Obviously the actual Mardi Gras is on this coming Tuesday, but the parades started two weeks ago. Above is a picture from the first parade of the season, Krewe du Vieux. This is one of the smaller parades, with floats drawn by smaller cars. The theme for Krewe du View was "Where the Vile Things Are" and pretty much anything was game to be made fun of. Bobby Jindhal? Check. Vladimir Putin? Check. BP Oil? Yup. This is a great, mostly political, satyrical parade that is NOT child friendly. I had a blast with my roommates, but seriously, don't take your kids to this parade.

Here's a blurry picture of one of the floats. 

Not only were there lots of parades to attend, the weather this weekend was phenomenal. Seriously. I finally got around to singing up for a gym membership and I have barely used it because I've been outside instead. Below are a couple of pictures I took while I was walking around uptown,

(no, I did not photoshop this in any way, I think someone living on this street got bored with the usual water meters and decided to spice things up)

On Friday Alexander came into town to join the festivities. Friday night there were two parades on St. Charles that we went to. Thanks to help from YAVA/friend (I really just consider her a friend, but she's also a YAVA) Valentina who is a pro at getting catches from the parades that come by. She claims it's all about eye contact, I suspect her bright red hair helps her stand out some as well…

While we had to rush around a bit on Friday to get down to the parades (had to wait for Alexander to get into town), Saturday we decided to set up early and hang out all afternoon. I would say the best way to describe Saturday was like tailgating minus the annoying freshman who don't know how to keep themselves together. We set up a bunch of folding chairs, had a cooler and watched the first round of parades at 1. Than just hung out and people watched until the second round started at 6. On Saturday Valentina and Alexander and I went with my mentor family, the Kates, and we all sat around and enjoyed the day. While we were out there we ran into my site supervisor, Layne, her husband Crawford and their puppy Justice. Justice loves to chew on things, she's at the age where pretty much anything is fair game.

Valentina's backpack? Definitely chewable.

We also happened to set up less than a block from Alexander's cousins. Here in New Orleans families with younger children own ladders with a little seat attached to it. This way the younger kids don't get trampled, instead they get to sit above the crowd. If you are an adorable child in a ladder you're more likely to get throws. An adult always stands up there with the kids to one, help with the ladder, two to make sure their kids don't get pelted in the face with beads. Because yes, that definitely happens.

Alexander took over for Ryan for a bit and helped with the girls, he obviously enjoyed himself.

All in all it was a great weekend! I was told those parades are jet a warm up for the big ones happening this weekend (well really they start on Wednesday, so tomorrow). I had a great time. And the cherry on top was Alexander getting this wig from one of the floats and being called Bob Marley by one of the street car passengers on our way home from the parade.



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