Thursday, April 8, 2010

palm sunday (March 28)...

Boo Boo (I call my FIL Boo-Boo) had his heart set on visiting an inner-city church that would have Gospel music.  MIL had her book and they suggested a church.  I don't know the exact street (I'll find out later), but I do know it was close to Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. which, for a man of peace, MLK Blvd in any city is not the safest place to walk.  From Wikipedia "Streets named for Dr. King often traverse African-American communities within cities. It is a stereotype that any street named after King is in a rough neighborhood and is to be avoided. Picking up on this stereotype, the comedian Chris Rock has said, "I'm lost, I'm on Martin Luther King, Run!, Run!, Run!.....""

Anyway, we walked up to one church that was just letting out.  I approached a woman in her car and asked if there were any others that she could suggest.  She mentioned that there would be another down the street, so off we march√©'d.  It was also just ending.  The lady we had asked earlier had followed us to this point and told us of one more; deeper into the city we walked.  Finally finding one that was just starting.

We, of course, were a spectacle, not only because we are white and the only whites at this church, but also because we were all holding cameras and three were speaking French.

We listened to the opening praise and worship portion of the service.  They took and offering.  They began the announcements.

After a few minutes, Jerome's parents were fidgeting.  They wanted to leave.  We were sitting near the back, but the deacon bouncers were all lined up along the outer aisles.

Jerome reprimanded his parents and told them that we were going to stay for the entire service.  He told his mother that this is to get back at her for all the masses he had to endure when he was a child.

They were relentless.  And lucky for them, at one point the "tithing" part of the service started and apparently, these Baptists always got up and went to the alter to offer their tithes.  So, that was our time to escape.  Which we did, but not unnoticed.  We then hung around on the porch of this church for way too long in my opinion.  They needed to get all their things into their bags; i.e. cameras, etc.

Just then, the original deacon bouncer that invited us in, came out to thank us for coming.  I apologized that my in-laws didn't understand English and they wanted to leave.  He told us to "stick together in this neighborhood and be careful" which sort of freaked me out.  I asked him which would be the best way "out"...he shrugged and shook his head and said again "just stick together".  YIPES!  We got in there with no problems...

Well, I think that he was fucking with us a little, because we got out of there with no problems too.  However, there were plenty more people awake (I call them "the sinners" since everyone else was in church) when we were leaving the neighborhood than when we arrived.  Just getting up from partying the night before maybe.  Anyway, they got what they came for; an experience.
Spent the rest of the day walking in the Garden District and riding the St. Charles Trolley.  As we were walking through the Garden District, we saw this sombrero having a siesta in the middle of a parking lot.  We picked it up and it became ours.  It was a windy day and happened to also be garbage day, so I really think this sombrero had been placed in the garbage, only to escape and fly into an adjacent parking lot, where we happened upon it.  It was real and "Made in Mexico" and it's all ours now!
We passed the Alliance Francaise and came across an art show that was in the garden of a private school.  Found one woman that could speak French to my in-laws and where I purchased a very cool pottery rooster container.  It has the colors of our bedroom, so that was my souvenir of the trip.
The trolley ride was really nice and relaxing as we trollied by all the beautiful homes on St. Charles.  We went all the way to the end and then turned around and continued to Canal.
That evening we had dinner at The Alpine.  I had the crab meat cakes with crayfish sauce and it was scrumptious!!!

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