Sunday, February 2, 2014

New Orleans - Presbytere Museum

While we were in New Orleans over Christmas we enjoyed several museums.  One of them being the New Orleans Historic Voodoo Museum.  That was.....different.....interesting for sure.

On the first full day we were in New Orleans, it rained, no thunderstormed (that's a word, right?), all day long.  We spent a lot of time ducking into restaurants and stores just to get a break from it.  That is most of reason we decided to go into the Presbytere Museum.  It is right beside St. Louis Cathedral, where we really wanted to go, but it was never opened.

We really didn't know what type of museum it was, but for $6 each with a chance to get out of the rain, just about anything would be worth it.  As it turned out there were basically two exhibits and both were very interesting.  The bottom floor was about hurricanes and the effect they have had on New Orleans including the most recent devastating one, Katrina and the top floor was about Mardi Gras in New Orleans.

The first thing we noticed when we walked in was the beautiful ceiling in the lobby.  It was bottles with messages in them and glass in the shape of hands.  I have no idea of the significance, nor anything else about it.  All I know is that it was pretty.

Oh look!  Something shiny!

Ceiling Art in Entrance of The Presbytere Museum New Orleans LA

The very next thing you can't help but notice is the piano on it's side.  Upon further inspection, it turns out that it was Fats Domino's piano!  When Hurricane Katrina went through New Orleans it affected everyone living there.  No one was spared in the misery.  Fats Domino's house was flooded and his piano washed out and away from his house.  It was recovered and eventually donated to the Presbytere Museum.  The museum decided to place in the position it was found, on its side.

Fats Domino's Piano as found after Hurricane Katrina in The Presbytere Museum New Orleans LA

One of the things that had the most impact on us was this garage door.  I am not sure what all the markings mean but this house was searched for survivors, human and animal. I think the black was for humans on September 12, 2005. Part of the red is when food and water was brought (FW) on October 3rd. The other part of the red is from the Louisiana SPCA looking for animals on September 27th.  I am guessing that they found two cats, one black and white and one orange and white. (I really am guessing one this, so if I am wrong, please let me know.) The part about not removing the dead dog because the owner will bury was really sad.

Garage Door with X mark after Hurricane Katrina The Presbytere Museum New Orleans LA

The second floor was a much much lighter subject.

Mardi Gras and Carnival!

I personally will NEVER go to Mardi Gras in New Orleans.  It is not my type of thing, so getting to see this part without actually having to go was nice.

The costumes are amazing!  I can't imagine the weight of this one though!  I searched online and it seems they can weigh up to 50 pounds or even more!

Mardi Gras Costume The Presbytere Museum New Orleans LA

I doubt this one weigh too much but I can't imagine it would have been easy to walk down the street while wearing it!

Mardi Gras Seahorse Costume The Presbytere Museum New Orleans LA

I imagine that standing on the back of a horse while it walks is not that easy, but if you look at the picture in the background the guy in green is standing on the back of the horse while holding (and I am sure drinking) a beer in each hand!  I have a feeling he didn't stay on the back of the horse the entire time....

Masked Horseback Run Mardi Gras The Presbytere Museum New Orleans LA

The Mardi Gras parade is not just about the costumes but also the floats!  I showed my students this picture and said that the flower was almost as tall as I was.  They giggled slightly and I added that I understood it really wasn't saying much.  (5 foot 1 inch!  woot! woot!)

Mardi Gras Float The Presbytere Museum New Orleans LA

I found it hilarious that they used the doors of port-a-potties as decoration and as the actual doors for the men's and women's restrooms.  I am guessing that port-a-potties are more common than the costumes and floats!

Fake Outdoor Restrooms for Mardi Gras The Presbytere Museum New Orleans LA

We all know that Mardi Gras wouldn't be Mardi Gras without the beads.  This is my artistic shot of the trip.

Mardi Gras Beads The Presbytere Museum New Orleans LA

And finally, $6 each not only got us out of the rain and allowed us to see some memorable things, it also allowed us to have this fabulous view of Jackson Square from up high.

Jackson Square from The Presbytere Museum New Orleans LA

I have one more museum to blog about and even more to tell you regarding our trip, so stay tuned.

Until then!