Did you know I went to New Orleans last week? I haven't blogged about it here, but it's on my public blog. Being back here again, I can hardly believe it happened. On February 10, I flew from Perth to Gulfport, Mississippi. Qantas has a direct route to Dallas now, which cut a few hours off each way. Even so, my total trip was close to 60 hours round-trip, door-to-door, in 10 days. Crazy? Definitely. Worth it? Absolutely!
I am a happy member of the Krewe of Muses in New Orleans, a group that might just be the best Mardi Gras krewe ever (not that I'm biased). I rode in the parade back in 2007 and had an amazing time. Since then, Muses has become so popular and overwhelmed that they have had to close membership, making my part in it feel even more exclusive and prized. There are so many members that they aren't sure when/if everyone will get a chance to ride. As much as I've missed the wonderful women I ride with (my float sticks together every year and they've included me in all their goings-on over time), I was starting to get nervous that Muses would realise that I never ride and perhaps someone else deserves my spot. Off I went!
I'm so happy I did! This year's ride was absolutely incredible. The crowds were insane! The enthusiasm was over-the-top! And the women I ride with are just plain fun. They are thoughtful, good people who know how to have a great time. I'm so lucky I landed on that float in my first year. Just being in New Orleans again made my heart glad. I couldn't stop smiling as I drove the familiar streets, stopped in familiar places and visited with old friends. The time in Mississippi was great, too. I needed to check in on our house. I wanted to visit with Grandmary. I took the opportunity to catch up with a few old friends. The trip was fantastic!
Being back here again seems very strange. I just had such an incredible experience, but it is so foreign to everyone here. They have no idea what I'm talking about when I try to answer their polite questions about my trip. Being there felt so right on so many levels that being here almost feels wrong. It's like I left "home" to come back to my family, but my family is all that is "home" about here. After over three years in a place (a significant length of time with my nomadic track record), that's a surprising feeling.