New Orleans Gets Going

Wednesday 5th February 2020

In the morning, sun and boiling hot, New Orleans unfolds: the Garden District, quite separated from the famous so-called French Quarter. Two different places in fact. Magazine Street is the spine of the Garden District, running for miles. Boutiques, Gays. Although the houses are normal size and close together, the scale is vast. The streets run into the far distance, disappearing into a forest of huge live oaks. La Boulangerie, so New York, was essential for Avocado Toast and Yoghurt Parfait (so that’s what ‘parfait’ means – in this case just ‘yoghurt’) then on to the show streets as suggested by Lanard, at whose residence I was to attend later. 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Streets were the ones, even 4th. Somehow I went the wrong way and encountered the direst poverty. The top part of 3rd was destitution and rheumy old men. Cross over St Charles, where I saw an olde worlde Streetcar, full of tourists and it’s a fantasy land of mansions in gardens in every known style frilled and rilled with wrought iron. As I found out later, the Garden District is the American city, built after the Louisiana Purchase of 1802 when Napoleon sold great swathes of territory to Jefferson for $11 million – which he didn’t have. Hence the separation from the ‘French Quarter’ which was the original city.

1st, 2nd, 3rd and even 4th Streets are a howling success: residences in every known-style, a fantasy land of decoration and impulsiveness, not a bit American as normally understood. You keep thinking: there can’t be more. And there is. A few others were wandering, looking at the architecture. You can’t go in any of them. They’re all private homes. I can think of nowhere else in the world where you would spend the morning looking at residential streets from the outside. And magnolias out too.

Strollers on Magazine

Strollers on Magazine

Mansion of St Charles Avenue: the hand of Farrow and Ball?

Mansion of St Charles Avenue: the hand of Farrow and Ball?

Farrow and Ball? Which Shade? Recent Mink or Old Mince?

Farrow and Ball? Which Shade? Recent Mink or Old Mince?

One with Curves

One with Curves

Frilly Iron

Frilly Iron

Angular

Angular

Magnolia!

Magnolia! And a Pediment 

A Pink One

A Pink One

Temple Entrance

Temple Entrance

Another Pink One

Another Pink One

A Gothic One

A Gothic One

 

Posted Saturday, February 8, 2020 under Adrian Edge day by day.

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