The turn out ended up being pretty good for the ROTC unit. Here is a picture before the party was in full swing.
After mingling with the current students (one of which was a geology major headed to Nevada for field camp who was fun to talk to), it was about time to cheer on the Greenwaves at the....
I've never been to the Superdome, and since we don't watch pro football, I had never even seen pictures of the inside except for after hurricane Katrina. It did not look like those pictures on this day! Nope, inside was a full blown big league football game complete with my favorite part, the marching band.
The Tulane mascot is the Greenwave. What? This guy is the official mascot. Is he a green chicken?
After all that excitement (not really) of the football game, it was time to eat again. We had reservations for 20 at Red Fish Grill in the French Quarter.
The food was really great, again. I had the signature dish, red fish. I don't know what kind of fish red fish really is, but it is tasty.
One last group shot of the whole gang before we all went our separate ways.
We had a great time in New Orleans. I can see why Drew enjoyed going to college there. Great food, good party spots, tight fraternity of ROTC friends.
As for me, my best memories of our week in Louisiana are from the air boat tour in the swamp with Junior telling all sorts of stories, the gorgeous evening light streaming through the 100-year old Live Oak trees at Oak Alley Plantation, the surreal drive through storm and flood damaged neighborhoods, and most of all, the food. The food wasn't just good to taste, it was meals that encapsulated the whole smell, taste, and feel of the Cajun south. Food that made you think about the traditions that built those recipes and the folks that shared them in small hot kitchens. Everything tasted like there was some magic ingredient in it that magnified individual familiar flavors and combined them with unknown root vegetables and spices to make a combination that could only happen in a small local restaurant on a dark and not altogether safe street in the French Quarter.
In comparison, Utah is a barren wasteland of food and food heritage. In fact, after we returned to Utah, I was so lonesome for the succulent pork and the blue-cheese beef cutlet and the red beans and the cornbread and the garlic-y black beans and, most of all, the beignets, that I decided food in Utah meant nothing and quickly reverted to this a couple of days after our return.