Today is Fat Tuesday – Mardi Gras. I am back home in Los Angeles after an unbelievable visit to New Orleans. My best of friend FF invited me to spend the weekend there with her and her family.
I had an AMAZING time. Back to back celebrations, parties, friends, food, drink and parades. Needless to say, I am wiped out now…a good wiped out…but wiped out.
For those from New Orleans…the concept of party is a way of life it seems.
FF and her dear husband CCF and all of their family there have been in celebration mode for weeks…from the New Orleans Saints NFC Championship win, to going to Miami to watch the beloved Saints win the Superbowl, to just days later hosting dozens of people in New Orleans for a four day party extravaganza in honor of CCF and Mardi Gras 2010, they truly know the meaning of the word “party”. Turns out this was indeed a big Mardi Gras for CCF and FF…the secret is revealed below.
So to see how New Orleans does “party” see my “schedule” as designed by FF and CCF…a whirlwind of truly amazing fun.
10am – Arrive from Los Angeles on a red eye flight and get settled in the gorgeous guest house at the Wedding Cake House, FF’s and CCF’s stunning home in New Orleans. (above)
5:30pm – After a long nap, change into an empire waist royal blue chiffon ball gown and white leather long kid gloves (required of ladies attending) in preparation for the Hermes krewe’s Grand Ball. (above and below)
8pm – The presentation ceremony for the 70th King of Hermes and his court at the Hermes Grand Ball. The King is CCF…best friend FF’s husband!!!!! (above and below)
9:30pm – The formal white tie and tails dinner dance in honor of the King of Hermes. Got a chance to catch up with many of FF and CCF’s good friends and also reconnected with my dear dear friend JH and her husband DH who came in from South Carolina. (above)
Noon – FF hosts a luncheon in honor of the King of Hermes (CCF) at famed historic New Orleans restaurant Antoine’s. (above)
2pm – Somehow we seem to lead the parade of Hermes members through the streets of the French Quarter and end up outside the Absinthe House for an impromptu street celebration. (above and below)
6pm – The Hermes krewe rides…and the King’s float leads the parade. We watched the parade of about 30 floats high above the crowds in the King’s box. (above)
10pm – After party at the Windsor Court for all of the King’s Hermes krewe riders. I had a wonderful bowl of gumbo at this little gathering!
9:30am – Brunch in honor of the King of Hermes CCF and his wife FF at their good friends and neighbors JH and FH’s grand St. Charles Avenue home. (above and below)
11am – The Krewe of Iris rides. FF kindly invited me to ride on the float for the second year in a row. FF and CF (CCF’s daughter) shared the experience of riding in this all women’s krewe with several of their out of town friends including TC, HG and RM. All of us out-of-towners called this “an experience of a lifetime.” The three hour ride of throwing beads to thousands was such a blast! (above and below)
3:30pm – King of Hermes (CCF) and his court all end up at the Windsor Court’s Polo Lounge for another impromptu gathering after we finish our ride on the Iris Krewe.
6:00pm – Watched the mega-Krewe of Endymion ride. CCF’s son TF got to ride on RBL’s float in honor of the New Orleans Saints. FF and I ran after the float (in an I Love Lucy moment) to try to say hi to RBL and TF – needless to say, some very obstinate police officers made it difficult for us to complete our “mission”. Hee hee.
Noon – Day gathering on the Thoth Krewe’s parade route at the home of FF’s friends. Spent a good two hours dancing, screaming and waving arms wildly for beads, stuffed animals and toys with FF, her son/my godson CGF, friends FM and CM and their cute kiddies LM and HM.
3pm – In Uptown, ran into a gorgeous Japanese Magnolia tree with pink blossoms on a lovely walk home from the parade with FF and cute little CGF (admission: this portion of the post has been updated after reader Jan corrected that the tree was a Magnolia and co-godmom and friend JH wrote to further say that tree was a Japanese Magnolia. I had previously identified it as a Dogwood. TMI (too much info) I know…but that’s the way I roll. :-)). (above)
3:30pm – Back to the Wedding Cake House to pack for my 7:30 pm flight back to Los Angeles. (above)
So I guess after an amazing four days all I can say is many many many thanks to CCF and FF for inviting me along on an incredible weekend. I LOVED IT. There’s just something so very special about New Orleans and my friends there.
Happy Mardi Gras everyone…hope you enjoy these photos!
P.S. Now, after a true Mardi Gras weekend of indulgence and parties, I just have to figure out what I’m giving up for Lent. Oh boy.
P.P.S. I realize this post has an inordinate number of names that have been abbreviated. Potentially confusing…but not confusing for those of us who were there! Makes it more of a mystery for readers…right? Or just a confusing mish mosh of capital letters. C’est la vie! 🙂 Laissez les bon temps rouler!!
All photos in this post by Coco of Cococozy