It’s no surprise that different people experience the same place in vastly different ways. If you’re traveling to a city for a short time, there is no doubt that you’ll experience it differently than someone who has lived in a location for many years.

This week we’re traveling to New Orleans, and we’re going to explore how two Hawkins employees, Veronica and Emily, experienced the Big Easy. Even though these travelers visited at different times, and for different reasons, many similarities ring true. New Orleans is a city meant to be explored with a careful eye and a clear head! With festivals and food around every corner–it’s no secret why these two enjoyed their time in the Crescent City.

Veronica McCrimmon Emily Shearburn
Surprisingly, I went to New Orleans on my eighth grade field trip and then again, multiple times when I was in college. It was a quick drive from where I lived in Florida and always a magical place to me growing up that was far more intriguing than any other places I visited. Seeing the city as a child was great and learning its history before I was of drinking age made me fall in love with the “Big Easy” in a way a lot of people rarely do. Don’t get me wrong, once you are of drinking age it gets even better, as long as you don’t drink too much the night before and miss out on all the cool things you can do during the day! I had never visited New Orleans until I toured Tulane my senior year of high school. Upon quickly falling in love with the city, I decided that it was the only place that I could spend the next four years and made the completely logical decision to only apply there. Luckily, I got in, and my years in New Orleans became the most memorable time of my life. From Mardi Gras to Crawfish boils, every new experience made me realize just how much history and culture lives in the city. I am so happy that my sister is starting her freshman year at Tulane next year, because I can go back and experience everything all over again!
Favorite restaurant and meal: Well, everything in New Orleans was delicious, but I could eat Café Du Monde beignets dipped in coffee for every meal. Favorite restaurant and meal: How can I choose just one? I’m a huge foodie, so I was constantly trying new places, but my favorite had to be Shaya on Magazine Street.
Most interesting place you visited: A New Orleans cemetery. We did a spooky walking tour at night and it is truly the best mix of history, beauty and creepy you can find. Most interesting place you visited: The Carousel Bar at Hotel Monteleone. It takes hotel bar to another level with a full scale, rotating carousel on which you can spin and sip.
Biggest surprise about destination: Everything there is to do along the waterfront! Most people don’t wander past Bourbon Street and it kills me, because there is so much more to the city. Biggest surprise about destination: How much is constantly going on! Especially in the spring there are festivals almost every weekend and always something to do.
Prized souvenir you brought back: A Mardi Gras colored boa! I was so excited to find it. Prized souvenir you brought back: I caught a coveted shoe at Muses Mardi Gras Parade.
Favorite moment of your trip: Standing in the middle of Bourbon Street during Mardi Gras. Favorite moment of your trip: Any and every moment at Jazzfest.
Piece of advice for friends traveling there in the future: Don’t miss out on the historical parts by drinking too much the night before! There’s so much to see and you don’t want to miss anything! Piece of advice for friends traveling there in the future: Do your research before you go. Don’t just hang out on Bourbon all day—explore Magazine Street, the Bywater, Oak Street, etc.
Most interesting person you met: The bellboy at my hotel. He was a New Orleans native and gave me tons of insider tips on where to go and what to do in the area. Most interesting person you met: I didn’t really meet him, I more stared and creepily took pictures, but one time I stood behind Drew Brees at a burger joint.

-Emily Shearburn

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