Monday, October 24, 2011

New Orleans - My Inspiration for Spontaneity

I would say that spontaneous is certainly not an adjective I would use to describe myself.  I am the kind of person that adds "create to do list" to my to do list.  I like order and consistency and to have a plan for everything.  Lately, with the impending arrival of Baby A, I have been preparing to cope with the realization that certainty and planning may be a thing of the past.

In an attempt to squeeze every minute out of one of our last pre-baby weekends, I prepared an itinerary of  fun Saturday activities.  We would wake up early and head to Cafe du Monde for coffee and donuts.  Then we'd walk over to Anthropologie to pick up a few hostess gifts.  Then we'd go to Orient Expressed to cash in a groupon we had.  Finally, we'd pass by the pumpkin patch in Claiborne and Jefferson to pick up a few festive porch decorations.

But a funny thing happened on the way to the forum  Quarter.  When we couldn't find a parking spot in the lot behind Cafe du Monde, we decided to park closer to Esplanade.  And it was there that we saw what appeared to be the start of a parade.  We had a choice - we could go to Cafe du Monde, or we could change our plans and see what it was that the McMain marching band was doing lined up along Frenchman Street.

In a first step to embracing the positive side of the unplanned, we chose the latter.  And what we discovered was a beautiful experience that I believe can only exist in a place as special as New Orleans.  The second installment of abstract art exhibits throughout the city, Prospect.2, kicked off on Saturday with a unique concert experience.  Five 50 member marching bands were staged at different locations in the Marigny.  Each had been taught the same composition by R. Luke DuBois.  At 11:30 exactly each band began to march toward Washington Square Park playing the composition.  The drum majors kept the beat with the other four drum majors by listening to rhythmical clicks of a walkie talkie.  Each band met at the park and continued to play the piece in complete harmony.

We followed McMain's band and second lined with a collection of Auburn fans, locals, and a pair of tourists from Australia.  When we arrived at the park and heard the beautiful sound these five bands made as they came together, we were truly moved.  It was such a unique and incredible experience, and it was one we would have missed had we not veered from the plan I had put together.  It was one of those days where you thought to yourself "only in New Orleans."  To think we almost missed it...


  1. I love the "unexpected." That is so cool!

    I've never been to New Orleans, but I'd love to visit one day. :)

  2. What a wonderful experience! this is exactly why i love New a bunch of other reasons.There´s NO place like Nola on this planet!



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