Trip Start Dec 30, 2006
84Trip End Jul 27, 2007
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It was great to see New Orleans again...I hadn't been there since 2000 and wasn't too sure what to expect. First thing I actually noticed was the cold. New Orleans was cold...very cold. Pretty much for the whole time we where there. I wasn't expecting that as the two previous times I had visited there it had always been very hot.
Besides a few vacant stores and a couple of apartment complexes that where fenced off and condemmed that we saw on the drive in from the airport we saw no indication that anything had happened to New Orleans.
I never experianced service issues at restaurants due to the reported labour shortages and the french quarter/downtown area that we where staying in was not affected that much by Katrina anyways. And, a huge police presence the entire time we where there - most likely to quell potential issues as there was a pretty serious murder / crime wave early in 2007. I felt safer on this visit than I did when I visited in 1999 or 2000.
Rest of the group arrived the next day so took it easy on the first night. Lots of people out for Mardi Gras...thousands and thousands. The airport wasn't terribly busy though (both flights I was on where sold out but airport is only running 65% of the number of flights since pre-katrina at this time). It looked like most people came via car from Texas and Mississippi.
It was good to see so many people out for mardi gras...the locals still say not quite as many as previous years but defentaly more than last year and should increase even more over next couple years as it gets back to pre-katrina volume. I think some of the pictures speak for themselves in terms of how busy the french quarter was.