I got back from my family’s two-week vacation to Destin and New Orleans yesterday afternoon. So I’d like to share a little taste of what I saw:
We actually visited three beaches: Destin and Ft. Walton Beach in Florida, and Grand Isle East in Louisiana.
Well, seeing as we stayed in Ft. Walton Beach, we got to use some very nice beachfront… except that the debris left from recent storms was a little annoying.
Destin’s public beach was… well… like any public beach… decent, but not great. We spent all of ten minutes there.
Now, Grand Isle was interesting. We spent a few hours getting from New Orleans to the island, which was the southernmost town of Lafourche Parish, the southernmost parish of Louisiana. (The state has “parishes” instead of counties.) Either we timed well, or Tropical Storm Bill did, because we had to drive through plenty foot-deep water to get to the state park. I’ll sum it up right now: the drive was much more interesting than the “resort island.” We had planned to find a place to swim and fish at the park. Fishing was out of the question now, because the pier hadn’t even been repaired after Tropical Storm Lillie and Hurricane Isidore last year when it got pummelled once again by Bill. And swimming? The water was a deep brown, thanks to Bill, and the bony remains of so many fish were scattered around that we spent a mere two minutes (record low) at the beach, before we just packed up and left.
Those of you driving or learning how to drive will know that the diagram to the right is a royal pain in the steering wheel. This is the mess that’s known as the intersection between Lake Forest Blvd. and I-510 Frontage Rd. W. in New Orleans East. I don’t think I even need to mention that what appears to be the continuation of Lake Forest Blvd. is actually a dead end, and that you actually need to drive through a dangerously narrow, two-way section of road to continue. Knowing that, you’d accidentally drive into the left turn lane, instead of the middle lane. Adding to that, the very narrow bottleneck is so old that the double-yellow line has faded completely, making it appear to be a one-way section of road. And you’re also supposed to treat this entire mess as a four-way stop.
Only in New Orleans.
And I almost forgot to mention that drivers in New Orleans are some of the nastiest, most impatient in existence. (Yes, they even compare to New Yorkers.) You know how you’re permitted to make a right turn on red? Most drivers there expect you to make that turn immediately, as if there weren’t even an intersection there. Or else, you get a nice, loud, blunt honk from the behind. No, make that two.
And the police? Well, they’re a block away, using their sirens to get to the restroom more quickly.
So, other than that, we had a great time.