Bananas! How on earth have I found so much to babble about?
Really, I blame New Orleans for BEING SO AWESOME!
Today was a quietly excellent day. I finally started feeling like I was getting some traction at work- like things were starting to click. I brought my lunch to work (leftover chicken tikka + roasted carrots with cumin seeds + locally grown brown rice + a kickass raita) and decided to go to one of the several cemeteries that surround my office building in Mid-City. There weren't any benches at the first couple cemeteries I went to, so I walked to the Katrina Memorial located in the Charity Hospital Cemetery- the only cemetery in New Orleans in which the dead are actually buried beneath the earth. Also buried there: the ashes of those who donated their bodies to medical science. Also there: 4 benches. I sat on one and ate my lunch and looked at the mausoleum/memorial.
Then, once I was finished, I went across the street and did a little wandering in the Jewish cemetery (Dispersed of Judah). New Orleans cemeteries are really, really cool. Very unique and endlessly interesting. I will try to bring a camera with me for the next time I am there. Except for the previously mentioned Charity Hospital Cemetery, everyone is entombed above ground.
Also, have I mentioned that the weather now is truly gorgeous? Makes exploring a lot more fun and pleasant.
After work, I headed out to the Lower 9th Ward Village Community Center for their Open Mic Night. I was misinformed of the time, and showed up an hour early. It was all good though, 'cause I hung out and talked to Mack and other community members outside while watching the sun set on a beautiful day. We sat out in the evening air for a spell, talking and laughing, and then we went inside to commence the Open Mic-itude. It was a small gathering (usually they get at least 30, and I think we maxed out at a dozen) but I heard some poetry in many types and forms, and a startlingly good guitarist/singer. It was really nice to be a part of it, listen to what inspired others and what it was they were inspired to do.
Afterward, I drove Bobbi home. When I arrived at the Village, Bobbi was taking a nap on the library floor. She was an enthusiastic listener and supporter, her knowledge of the people and places in New Orleans was wide and deep. She calls herself "housing challenged" because she doesn't have a home of her own. She couch surfs some of the time, and I don't know what she does the rest of the time. I was kind of afraid to ask, you know? But we had a great talk on the way from the Lower 9th to the Columns Hotel Uptown- she wanted to hear Fredy Omar play. "Riccardo Crespo on Wednesday, and Fredy Omar Thursdays," she said several times. She invited me to join her but I was ready to go home after a long day of working hard, wandering cemeteries, hanging out on the stoop of the Village, and listening to New Orleans' young poets.
I am glad this place is my home.