True Story











{January 27, 2010}   Who Dat!

True Story:

Everyone in my family is an Aquarius. Which makes for a very expensive January. I have to take out a home equity line of credit every December and January to pay for all these gifts.

Keeping with this theme I decided to take Pump to New Orléans for a birthday weekend celebration. It’s just 3 hours down the road from us and well,  I guess I don’t really need to explain why we went… it’s New Orleans.

We are excited. Haven’t been on a real vaca since probably our honeymoon. Definitely not since our G Monkey was born. And seeing how we are “working” on things since he took up with my good friend and colleague this past summer, thought we owed it to ourselves to get out.

Friday:

Anywho, the fun begins when driving down I 10 in my GMC Envoy with 180,000 miles on it, the lights blink and the car conks out. We barely make it to a gas station on the MS/LA border. Mind you, it is at night and raining. Good Times! For those of you from a different part of the country, this area isn’t the greatest place to break down. Could be worse. Could be better. Thank you good people of Kiln,MS (Farve country)!

We hop out of the car and I immediately start asking “real men” for a jump. This of course, infuriates Pump because he hasn’t diagnosed the problem yet and probably because he knows he should have jumper cables in my car.

As it turns out, and you may have guessed, it’s a little more involved than a jump off.  Pump jumps in a car with an oyster farmer who borrowed my cell phone to call his wife and lie about being stuck in a traffic jam, to go 5 miles down the road to Wally World for a new battery.

I stay with my car of course. A) I don’t know Mr. Oyster farmer/murderer/pump molester (probably better to separate). B) Our window is stuck down. C) I am on vacation already and prefer to just sit in the passenger seat of my car in this well-lit gas station, drink a Corona Light and read a magazine while Pump figures out the details.

I receive random periodic texts from Pump  like, “Wal-Mart out of batteries”. WTF? and “Headed to O’Reilly’s”. I doubt they are even open and start thinking we may be crashing in Slidell, LA tonight. Not my favorite vacation spot.

I decide to do a little shopping at the gas station. Unbeknownst to Pump, we are going to the Saints Playoff Game against the Cardinal’s the next day. He is a HUGE sports fan. His team is the Bears but he would die to go to any professional sporting event. I am an Alabama (National Champs) football fan but don’t care that much for the rest.

Not true anymore. I am a Saints fan for life now. Who Dat!

Although I handle crises’ really well, I am starting to panic about the car situation a little. I don’t want to be stuck here in BF Mississippi when the game starts at 3:30 the next day. Luckily, this gas station has a little section of the store devoted to the Saints. I buy a foam “#1 finger”. My gut tells me this will come in handy later.

Pump, on the other hand, does not handle crises’ well. He is a self-proclaimed “Panicer”. Truth be told, our roles are reversed in many aspects of our relationship.

He and Oyster farmer arrive and put the new battery in. Mr OF has to spot Pump a twenty at O’Reilly’s because he didn’t have enough cash on him. Pump is not allowed to have bank accounts anymore. That’s another “true story”. Don’t worry, we paid OF back. And he paid us back over and over that night with his wife calling my cell every 30 minutes to see where he was.

Mrs. OF: Please lose my number. Move on. He’s not coming back!

They put the new battery in. The car cranks. Yea!

Within seconds,  the car proceeds to tell us the battery is not charging and shows only 1/4 of battery power is working from the NEW battery. You guessed it… Alternator. That’s great! If you like awesomeness…

Mr. OF tells us we are not going to make it to New Orleans. 

Naaaa… We’re going for it.

One of my father in-laws (I have two) is a mechanic. We call him and tell him the situation. At this point I believe we are about 40 minutes from our hotel in the French Quarter. He says, “you’re not going to make it”. Damn it!

He says maybe if it wasn’t at night and we didn’t have to run our lights we could make it. Pump asks if we can trust the battery gauge. Yes, and if we have 9 1/2 volts we can run the car. Al right! This is good news.

We pull into Slidell, LA to a large travel center. We turn the car off and weigh our options. 

We toss out leaving the car and renting one (not a great idea), spending the night in Slidell (Not a great idea), going for it (not a great idea). We ask the guy behind the counter EXACTLY how many minutes are we from the French Quarter in New Orleans. He says, “20”.

Pump:  We won’t make it.

This is when I play my hand, literally. I pull out the foam hand and say, “We can’t stay here. We have to wave this hand at the Superdome tomorrow”.

Pump:  We’re going for it.

LONGEST 20 minutes of my life. I’m calling bullshit on that one Mr. travel center worker. There was also a VERY long bridge over Lake Pontchartrain in between us and our hotel room.

I have to drive because Pump claims night blindness. It’s raining and he won’t let us turn on the defrost to clear the windshield because it might use up too much battery power. So he rolls down the window and freezes me out.

Picture this if you can: we are holding hands like Thelma & Louise praying to make it over the bridge. Intermittently screaming at each other to “shut up! We’re not going to make it”,  and laughing like we are Kramer seeing how far the old girl will go.

Drum roll: We made it over the bridge… Now to the hotel we pray. 

I kept telling him we just can’t break down til we get to our hotel. If we break down any sooner we’ ll get cut.

My father taught me my whole life that if I don’t follow his directions to a T  in New Orleans I will get cut (with a knife people. Hello – murder capital).

We make it. We tell the valet we hope the parking garage is close, otherwise he may not make it (we don’t want him to get cut) and be SURE to turn the lights off.

A few cocktails and some dinner later and we are a little bit more relaxed. Tired and knowing we have a big day the next day (never an excuse to go to bed in New Orleans) we head to our room about 11:00pm.

As we are sliding the key card in the door the kids across the hall (I’m saying 19, 21) invite us in for a shot. Yes,of course, by all means… Turns out one of the “kids” is the kicker for LSU which I proceed to insult by saying so you’re LSU’s Tiffen (Bama’s kicker the last 4 years folks).

He graciously says, “yes ma’am, that’s the POSITION I play”. He is really handsome and a sweet kid. He remains our “fantasy friend” for the rest of the weekend. (I’ll leave this up to your own interpretations. Don’t judge. We’re “working” on things.) None the less, I will be rooting for him next season. Forgot to get a picture though.  They invite us to go back down to Bourbon street with them. Na thanks, we’re old.

Saturday

Wake up way to early after a night in New Orleans. But I have a toddler and don’t know how to sleep in.

First order of business, the car. Here is where things start to turn around for us.

Concierge helps us find an open Firestone only 10 blocks away. They are only open half the day (Saints are playing later) so we have to hurry. Can the old girl make it 10 blocks? Yes!

We’re not going to let a little thing like having to purchase a new alternator on vaca in the big Easy slow us down. We are just excited that we can pay for it.

True Story: When this has happened to us in the past (twice) we have had to ask a family member to wire funds or come get us.

We hit the streets to people watch, eat, drink and pick out our Saints paraphernalia. One of the things Pump loves about me (from his lips) is that when I go to a sporting event or anything else for that matter I go for it. I mean obnoxious. I like to dress the part, hollar with the fans and berate the other side. When Alabama plays football, usually somewhere around the 3rd quarter the word uterus comes out of my mouth. I don’t know why but the other teams always seem to have sore uteruses when they are getting beat by Alabama.

So he is embarressed already that I have said “Roll Tide” to a handful of passing Alabama fans on the street. I find my Saints jersey and earrings to boot right off the bat. I keep pointing out ones for Pump. He just keeps shaking his head no and telling me he hasn’t found “it” yet. I don’t know if you’ve ever been to New Orleans, but they sell Saints t-shirts every 10 feet. Apparently his T-shirt will have a faint golden glow around and we  will just know.

Naps

True Story: I took four naps on this day. None of them longer than 90 seconds but all very helpful. Pump found this disturbing and a little frightening. I was tired and you’re not allowed to be tired in New Orleans on Saints game day.

1st nap: at a red light while in the driver’s seat. Pump woke me when it was our turn.

2nd nap:  Waiting for the parking attendant to take our car in the parking garage. I slept for 30 seconds and needed about 10 minutes to “wake up” to the irritation of Pump. I’m not a good waker-upper, geez.

3rd nap: During the 3rd quarter at the Saints game. Just needed a minute. They serve a lot of $8 beer at the Superdome. I just needed a little diet coke and nachos to wake up.

4th nap: In between game & dinner I was allowed to lie down on our hotel bed for 90 seconds. Thanks. Apparently you are not allowed to sleep in the Big Easy.

Da Game

Who Dat? Who Dat? Who Dat Say Da gonna Beat Dem Saints?!?!

Hands down. Best time ever. The city of New Orleans knows how to host a party.

We asked a few folks whether we should get a cab or walk from our hotel to the game. Superdome is not in the safest neighborhood. Again, childhood flash backs of potentially cheering on the Saints with my gut wound. According to my dad, all violent criminals in NO use knives.

We were told, “walk babe. Take your drink and walk babe. Follow da black and gold”. 

This was right up my ally. I can Who Dat with the best of them. The energy was great. Even the Cardinal’s fans were who datting.

People asked me everywhere we went, “how’d y0u get tickets!”. 

Me:  Online. 

The new world-wide web hasn’t caught on everywhere I guess.

They have parties inside parties inside parties. You seriously have to rest up for this shit.

True Story:   Superdome rocks! No bad seat in the house. Easy access to bathrooms & beer from any seat. Full House. Who Dat!

We had an oboxious fan behind us. It was Awesome! I love to experience crazy people for short amounts of time. He kept yelling at the handful of Cardinal’s fans around us to sit down & shut up. They already were, mind you. For those of you that didn’t see the game this was an ass woopin by the Saints. 

When Reggie Bush caught a punt return and ran it back 87 yards to touchdown for the Saints, obnoxious guy yelled, “OMG, how many points is that?” at the top of his lungs. I go, “31”! We were 31 points ahead.

The rest of the night is a mixture of Bourbon Street, music, dancing, dinner and bed. Enough said.

True Story: Pump and I can talk ourselves into anything. We can justify with the best of them. My favorite excuses are, “Life is short. We never do this. Hey, it’s Tuesday”.

Sitting at Acme Oyster House (da bomb.com) the next day for lunch, all checked out & paid up, barely. We are having a couple bloody mary’s and chargrilled oysters when we decide tomorrow is MLK day we should just stay another night (not a great idea). We finally reconciled to spend the night at the Beau Rivage in Biloxi half way home.

True Story: Got upgraded to a penthouse suite at BR (I have no idea why). It had 3 bathrooms and was bigger than my house. I won $100 on the black jack table. Who Dat!

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B says:

Jealous! This sounds like an awesome vaca! Your dad is right…you will get cut in the big easy!!



Dusty says:

Very Funny. Sounds like a great trip.
Pump sounds cute.



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