We're in Destin! It is so pretty! And we're not going to have a hurricaine!
Life is good.
Nawlins was fun. Brief, but fun. We arrived in the afternoon and headed straight for Bourbon Street. Um. That. Was. A. Mistake. I had no idea it was so raunchy! Every other business is a strip joint or a titty bar. The bars all have guys outside holding up signs that say "Big Ass Beer!!!" Waaaayyyyy too much stuff to have to explain to the kids, so let's get off Bourbon Street, thank you very much.
Gawd, don't I sound like Miss Priss!
Had a WONDERFUL dinner at NOLA, one of Emeril's restaurants. While the food was amazing, the real highlight of the evening was watching Bridget experience food of that caliber. She was vibrating with excitement the moment we walked into the door. She read the entire menu and selected a filet mignon with a bleu cheese stuffed portabello mushroom. Aidan ordered pasta from the kid's menu. So, Ray, Bridget and I ordered 2 entrees to share between the 3 of us, the filet and a wonderful smoked duck. I also enjoyed a salad of lump crab and jullienned celeriac. Bridget analyzed and savored every bite and even gave the waiter new ideas to pass along to the cook about incorporating the restaurant's logo into the presentation of their food.
Took a river boat cruise on Sunday morning and really enjoyed the sights and the knowledgeable commentary from the staff. Learned a lot about New Orleans and the agricultural, refining and shipping businesses on the mighty Mississippi.
Back into the car to head through Alabama and Mississippi for Florida. Wondering the whole way if we're to be turned around and evacuated back out due to Fay.
Finally arrived in Destin, FL about dinner time. Stumbled around the town looking for our hotel, the ever-swanky Residence Inn. Finally found it, as it's hidden from the world in the Sandestin Resort community. This is an amazing an unexpected bonus as this is a private resort with private beaches, and a whole shopping/dining area that has everything you could ever want. All accessible by regular shuttle vans.
Monday morning, after the complimentary breakfast buffet, we headed to the "Gulfarium" where the kids had an appointment for a "dolphin encounter" with Kiwi, a tropical spotted dolphin.
What a neat experience. It started with the trainer talking to us about how to behave with Kiwi and why. Then, the kids got into the water with the trainer and spend the next 30 or so minutes learning about dolphins with an up-close and personal example right in front of them. They got to ask her to do behaviors and tricks, reward her, touch her, get kissed by her, and be right there in the water when she swims so fast to jump out and touch her hanging ball. Photos and video to follow.
After we saw the rest of the Gulfarium, it was BEACH TIME!!!! We headed to our own private resort beach where there is a full bar and cabana boys. Snow white sand, azure water and plenty of sunshine as Fay decided to head east. Body surfed, skim-boarded, swam in the waves and generally relaxed. I think today we'll build a sand castle.
Two more days until we climb back into the car for the interminable ride back to Texas.