Ladies do not perspire. They glisten. Seriously? Let’s get real here. Travel to New Orleans in the Summer. You will glisten, no doubt. You will be awash in the glistening rivers of…. sweat. From dawn to dusk, and throughout the night, your clothes will drip and your hair will drip. YOU will drip. Nonstop.
The savvy traveler will plan their excursions for the early morning hours. By noon you will have found an air-conditioned oasis and be loathe to leave. If you did not pack extra clothing, you will be searching for a laudromat or washing your items in the sink at your lodging. Naps are a must for those who are not used to the heat and humidity. The evening hours are not much cooler.
You will learn to walk slower than a turtle. There’s a reason why things move slowly in New Orleans. It’s not just the mindset but the actual weather that requires that things move slower. You will walk with your arms raised hoping to catch the occasional river breeze and when you catch that breeze, its impact will be on a level similar to a religious experience. If the concept of Hell had not already been created, summer in New Orleans will most certainly have provided a metaphor if not the actual concept.
That’s not to say that it is all bad. My recent 4-day trip found me still enthralled with the people, the food, the architecture, the scents, and the purple and gold skies at twilight.
I watched artists creating and then hanging their works on the fences at Jackson Square. Silver painted mimes perched or squatted here and there in absolute stillness. A woman sat outside the Gumbo Shop playing those jazzy blues on an electric keyboard. A fortune telling clown danced up and down Bourbon Street sporting a hot pink tutu and twirling a matching lace umbrella. I saw a second line pass through the Quarter, white handkerchiefs waving, as the participants danced through the streets following a brass band.
I had the honor of a rare sighting (outside of Mardi Gras ) of a member of the Indian Krewe in full blue feathered and beaded regalia. Unfortunately, I was not in a position to get a picture. But I have the memory. A most wonderful memory indeed.
New Orleans is what you make of it. Heaven or Hell. I may never again visit the City in the summer months (you can’t really say “never” when it comes to New Orleans), but if ever I do, I know that I will “glisten” copiously and happily with best of them. Laissez les bon temps rouler!