What’s so red hot about NOLA?

Earlier this month I attended a diabetes educator conference in New Orleans. I thought it was ironic that a conference on diabetes would meet in a city known for its gluttony and rich foods. You can be sure I took some notes (in between gluttonous bites of rich food) for an upcoming blog post, documenting my shallow impressions of the Big Easy.

I was there for two days before I figured out what NOLA stood for. As soon as I uttered the question, “What’s NOLA?” it hit me:  New Orleans, LA. Even though I said “I get it!” at the same time someone with an eye roll told me the answer, it didn’t count. I was definitely not cool. In more ways than one.

NOLA_Molly Sweating

This is how I looked every time I went outside

In Maine, meteorologists make us feel worse about winter when they interject ‘wind chill factor’ in every other sentence. In NOLA, they harp on the ‘heat index,’ which was off the charts during my off-season stay.

Despite the heat, I spent most of the time shivering in conference rooms that would have made a comfortable habitat for penguins. So to get warmed up, some new friends and I went out one evening to give my arthritis some relief.

NOLA_friends 2

These beauties from Texas and Oklahoma took me in as their token Northerner, and taught me to use y’all in everyday conversation.

We saw some truly amazing sights.

Unicorn – How many people witness this sight overlooking Jackson Square?



Cafe Du Monde snowstorm – I know everyone goes here, but have you ever seen it snow when it is 95 degrees?

NOLA_cafe du monde

Confectionary blizzard – the stuff sticky dreams are made of!

Hot Sauce display – Can it get any hotter? You bet!

NOLA_hot sauce with flames


The Garden District – This is a popular destination but look what we saw when we strolled past Ann Rice’s home.

NOLA_Rice 3

Bloody awesome!

Cajun Food – How can you go wrong when you eat at a restaurant named ‘Cochon’ which means pig in French?


I went whole hog

Sink in local bar – We got advice to check out a bar located in the wealthy Garden District and I tried NOLA wheat beer.

NOLA_empty soap

The beer was great but we decided not to eat there.

The Spotted Cat Instead of going to Bourbon Street we went to Frenchmen Street and caught a glimpse of this jazz band.

Screen Shot 2015-08-21 at 3.51.04 PM

We didn’t regret it

Foolish fun – Have you ever heard of the ‘Hash House Harriers?’ It is a ‘Drinking club with a running problem’ and they were holding their annual Red Dress Run. Men and women were drinking and running in red dresses. This is a form of exercise I think I could get into, even when it is HOT.

NOLA_red dress

I felt so out of place in my outfit.

I wish I could have stayed to see who won the Red Dress Run, but homesickness and a room malfunction made me ecstatic that I was going home.

NOLA_room leak

Just when I thought it could NOT be more humid

I’m never sure whether I can get the seat cushion out, and hang onto it in case of a ‘water landing.’ So I played it safe on the flight home.

NOLA_molly life jacket

It was a bumpy flight but I felt confident

Have y’all ever been to NOLA? Was it Red Hot? Do you like cochon? Have you ever seen a man run a race in a red dress? Would you like to?

Note: all photos by Shallow Reflections except featured image courtesy Pixabay.

©2015, Stevens. All rights reserved.

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20 thoughts on “What’s so red hot about NOLA?

  1. So great Molly! I showed my son the picture of the bathroom…his comment “Well, budget cuts hit ‘me hard this year I guess…no room in the budget for even a soap dispenser.” That bathroom could’ve probably been an entire post to itself.

    • Wow! Having someone from South Florida say it is hot in NOLA is great validation for my experience there. Thanks so my for stopping by the blog. I love making new blog friends. I really enjoyed your book, “Who Stole My Spandex.”

  2. Yes, Yes, Yes, Yes, Yes!!! Love NOLA. I’ve only been there once, but there’s a certain flair to that city that makes me remember it and want to go back. Enjoyed your picture fun!

  3. No lack of fellas in dresses here in Portland OR…..
    I visited NOLA once in 1978 on a cross country trip and yes, it was HOT. I touristed around on my limited budget and one afternoon sat my fanny down in the gorgeous Court of the Two Sisters. I had NEVER had good liquor before (although I doubt I knew that) but I decided I shouldn’t leave NOLA without enjoying a symbolic mint julep. So I ordered one that cost a total of $7, my ENTIRE food budget for the day—-but I sat there–somewhat in shock– sipping and writing postcards and enjoying the palm trees, toucans and lovely grillwork—and my sophistication. But I was tired and hungry and had NO IDEA how that drink would hit me—-I could barely walk when I got up to leave—and in the ladies bathroom I actually fell on the floor in the stall—an unprecedented low heretofore. And while it was a lovely visit overall, THAT is my strongest memory of NOLA!

  4. My, my, my! What an eventful trip. That pig beside your plate lucked out and missed the butcher! Did you take her in as a pet and name her “Babe”? Maybe we should see if that band could come up to Maine to play. They look so lively and entertaining!
    I have never seen a man in a red dress. Yes, yes I would love to see it in person.
    My goodness, look at you, always promoting safety first with that fashionable life vest. You’re a real “safety” trend setter!
    How many of you ended the trip with a blood glucose level of 200+? Did you make a tally? I know what you were doing. You are exemplifying what NOT to eat by showing the diabetic population what happens when you indulge in that NOLA food! Good work :):) 😛

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