in the house of the rising sun
February 20, 2011
It wasn’t until Sunday that I began to see the old world in New Orleans. The first time through the Quarter, I was too disoriented and in a fog to pay attention. But the second time through I could look and see the muted colors of French country houses, the now-memories of long ago, the shutters, the floor to ceiling windows, the lace-iron balconies.
The shutters and louvers of the windows in the pic on the right, remind me of the country houses we saw on our road-trip south from Paris to Ronchamp. Back then, the five of us – Rick, Sarah, Shana, Mim and I – stayed in a farm house before we headed to Ronchamp. Back then, I saw the chapel in the rear-view mirror and I was lost. Back then, we climbed the mountain-road to Notre-Dame-du-Haut. Back then, in Corbusier’s chapel, I knelt and prayed. (How is it that 20 year old memories and 40 year old feelings find their way back to the present?)
Sunday morning the Quarter and the square in front of the Cathedral were filled. This was the pre-Mardi Gras crowd. The taxi driver, who took us to the airport, told us that by the week-end the place would be crawling with out-of-towners. (The city had already placed road barricades up and down the parade streets.) On one level I was glad to be heading home and away from the pre-Lenten ritual.
The pic of the shutters and louvers is from the courtyard where Tom and I had breakfast Sunday morning. The fog was gone.