Thursday, November 25, 2010

A big, easy Thanksgiving.

When I moved to New Orleans this past June, after some preliminary scouting about documented here in the May archives, I settled Uptown, in the "Sliver by the River" that escaped the worst of the damage that followed the levee failures that accompanied Hurricane Katrina's landfall in 2005.  It wasn't really a conscious decision, just where I happened to be staying and, of course, a beautiful part of New Orleans that many people are familiar with if they take the St. Charles Avenue streetcar.   I was familiar with it, it was picturesque, and we moved here.

I am moving downtown now, to the other side of the French Quarter.  Not in the Quarter itself but equally convenient to it, another fifteen minute walk should the lady of the house and I choose to make it.  The Quarter is nice, it is the city's main industry, but we rarely visit so much as pass through to enjoy the scenery from the seat of our motorcycle. There is always something going on but New Orleans is more than the storied Vieux Carre, there is always something going on somewhere in New Orleans.  We crisscross New Orleans enjoying everything this great city has to offer, the good as well as the less good.

When I move, I'll miss the sound of the St. Charles streetcar grinding its wheels along its tracks in the night air.  It isn't the dead of night.  No hour is dead in New Orleans.  There is always something afoot, people about, a band playing, a barroom open, a cook laboring over a stove to concoct a perfectly savory plate, something to see, someone to talk with.

I'm looking forward to the move.  I'm looking forward to owning a home in a city that feels like home.  I am very happy here and thankful to call myself a citizen.  Balancing the pros against the cons, moving to New Orleans was the best decision I have ever made.

Best wishes for a happy and bountiful Thanksgiving!  And bountiful days until the fourth Thursday of next November!  Measure the good things in your life and measure the things that cause you sorrow.  Be thankful for both.   If there were no suffering, you wouldn't know you were alive.  A painless life may be a charmed one, but it isn't one that can be savored.  Sweetness is enhanced by bitters.  Pungency is a quality best inhaled with wide nostrils and a bare-toothed grin.  Stoicism has its own joie de vivre.  It is a joy to be alive, alive in New Orleans, Whalehead King at the tail end of 2010 with 2011 around the corner: a new life, new possibilities, a new quarter to be drawn from the fiber and meat of being in a most perfect place that encourages fiber and being.

Happy Thanksgiving.  May you find yourself in my shoes.  May you find yourself in New Orleans.
With a handshake,


Robert Morris said...

Congratulations on the new home, but I'm also sad to see Uptown losing such a charismatic newcomer. How much longer can we count you as ours? I don't think I've missed a post since the Refrigerator Bandit introduced us...


Whalehead King said...

Thanks, Robert. We made the decision with mixed feelings but we'll still be in New Orleans, and as tax paying citizens to boot.

Everyone reading this is encouraged to click the "Uptown Messenger" link in the right hand column to get the latest and most interesting news about the Uptown part of New Orleans you won't read anywhere else.


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