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Cross Country Road Trip: Part 1

Wooo! July ended with a bang! And its literally been so crazy this August I haven't had the chance to share! I had the honor and privilege to accompany one of my best friends on a bittersweet road trip to move her across the country. End point = San Diego within a seven day time period! The 8th day for me was spent flying all day back to good old RVA. The trip started out fruitful and exciting and nervous with the first stop towards the end of South Carolina, in an extremely rural town of Fair Play. And I mean rural! no stop light rural... Predominately inhabited by a Mennonite community and also where my friend's parents live. We crushed considerable time, got a chance to start reading The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho (an amazing story circulating around my friends, an absolute must read!) We arrived around Sevenish on Sunday evening. 20130814-140543.jpg (Where the sidewalk ends just below) This was taken off massive Lake Hartwell 20130814-140650.jpg Breakfast at the local general store, just next to the John Deere rider mower shop. 20130814-140731.jpg

20130814-140800.jpg It was crickets all night long! Or rather every single insect in the universe could be heard and thats it ...but eerily quiet if that makes sense. The calm and relaxation was great especially after a full days drive because the next stop... New Orleans!

We left South Carolina on Monday mid morning... With a Lunch pitstop in Atlanta, Georgia

20130826-135248.jpg .... Where we got lost....for about an hour off track.

20130830-123830.jpg 20130814-151240.jpg We arrived in New Orleans late night at our friend Janet's building to stay, formerly The Friendly Touch bar and soon to be The Friendly Touch Fabric Store. Though this was in renovation state it was a quite cool spot to crash. What perfect timing it was to show up to experience night life shenanigans. We walked around the French Quarter, had a man write poems for us who was from Northern Virginia and! lived in Richmond! Super fun.

20130814-151608.jpg ( I requested inspiration for my poem) 20130814-151726.jpg Popped around some local bars and Cafe du monde for my friend's late night beignet cravings.

(view from the Friendly Touch at night) 20130814-151951.jpg

(View from the Friendly Touch in the morning) 20130814-152117.jpg

20130814-152143.jpg First destination of the day Buffa's pronounced Boo-fahs...

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We popped about and around local shops

20130830-122707.jpg Found this little guy...

20130830-122911.jpg And the most amazing scarf ever from Pop City

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20130830-124248.jpg A sweet tooth break for my friends

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20130830-124612.jpg Whatever sweet things they ate.... Apparently mind blowing!

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20130830-125002.jpg We later drove around the 9th Ward where Katrina had hit. It was insane to see so many empty grass covered lots. And quite humbling to see what nature can do. But there was so much rebuilding.

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20130830-125248.jpg I had tried to snap some photos of the newly built modular homes equipped with solar panels and awesome architecture shapes but I did not get the chance :( We had hoped to venture to a few cemeteries but time constraints didn't allow such (save for next time!) after walking around in the Louisiana humidity, a nap was extremely vital. A few hours later we stopped by Coop's Place for some local New Orleans eats. I had ordered the Chicken Tchoupitoulas which I still.... Cannot pronounce. Amazing! Amazing amazing amazing! Super pleased that my friends had extreme food envy, so of course I shared, I hate wasting food I am unable to finish.

20130830-130658.jpg After dinner we had to do one of the most touristy things while we were in New Orleans: the haunted ghost tour. It left out of Flabagan's Irish Pub such a great spot! It reminded me so much of Richmond... And Andy out bartender told us stories of how Nicolas Cage would come in there all the time. Our tour guide Tessy was seriously fantastic and I'd like to note our friend Janet was such a sport for coming with us on such a tourist event. The haunted tour was creepy. Really creepy. I enjoyed hearing some historical information, though I absolutely tried to fact check a considerable amount. One of the more chilling houses, where interestingly Nicolas Cage had once lived, the LaLaurie House originally owned by Delpine LaLaurie was by far the most disturbing stories of the entire route. I have linked information above if you are curious. Perfect end for our last night in New Orleans. In the morning we would hop back in the car towards our next location: Austin, Texas!