Tuesday, December 28, 2010

New Orleans architecture promotes exercise

It's a fact of life, men can lose weight in a hurry.  Some of them don't gain very much to begin with.  When I lived in Italy for three years (courtesy of the US Navy) I gained twenty pounds.  It took me more than three weeks to lose them on returning to the States, but I've managed to keep them off without too much trouble.  While I am ten pounds heavier than I was two decades ago, I like to think I'm in fighting trim for a desk jockey.

What does this have to do with the price of a Luzianne teabag in New Orleans?  I'll tell you.   During the whole relocation process of moving from apartment to house, we've been eating out a lot.  Not just po'boys at the Parkway Tavern but also pizza at a joint up the street in our new neighborhood.  I stepped on the scale last night and guess what?  I lost a pound.  I credit all the heavy lifting of boxes up the stairs.  That and the fact that a New Orleans house tends to be loooong.  I'm getting my exercise walking from front to back and back again every time I've forgotten what I got up for in the first place.

I've got to ride my bicycle from the Lower Garden District to Faubourg Marigny sometime this week.  That won't really be exercise. New Orleans is so flat, you can't really break a sweat if you ride like I do.  I ride like I write, just meander about hither and yon, take a detour and then double back to stay on course.  It isn't the destination that matters, it is the journey.  I tend to make the most of the spaces in between.

My mother will tell you that even as I child I was one to stop to smell the roses, a regular Ferdinand the Bull as opposed to Taurus (I'm really a Sagittarius, ruled by the loins, born in the Year of the Snake).  Some inclinations are hard to break, more so than habits.

So, fit as a fiddle and sleek as a bowspit, I wander my new neighborhood, chatting up everyone I greet and asking questions only a stranger would ask.  It's a real Nantucket sleigh ride.  They must be thinking,  "Who is this new weirdo who rides a motorcycle in a suit down Ursalines Street?  Will he still be here next week?"  Yes, neighbor, he will.  He lives here for better or for worse.  Probably better.  Nice to meet you!


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