Panhandle to Mobile, and New Orleans / by deanna szuter

After leaving Sarasota, I made my way North along the coast.  While talking on the cell phone with Mom, I saw an exit for Gibsonton.  That's the winter home of most Carnies and Side Show performers! Of course I took that exit, and found a Carnie Museum. SCORE!  Many photos were taken, and you can see them here.

Farther up the coast into the bend of the Panhandle, I stayed the night at the Holiday RV Park and Campsite for one night to break up the drive to New Orleans pretty much in half.  Called ahead, made a reservation, and was given instructions on how to deal with check in after hours.  The camp host forgot to leave instructions, and was left with a groundskeeper who put me in a spot next to a mobile home that happened to have a herd of cats living under it.. mowing and screaming all night. 
The camp host also forgot that he said he'd be available to check me out by 8am.. and wasn't there when I left at 8:30.
On I went, deeper into Florida Swamp country than I've ever been before.  I noticed, while driving along, that the jungle on either side of the road was sort of cut off at that line about 20ft off the roadside.  Perpetual wall of jungle.  I imagine if it were neglected for a year, the jungle would swallow up the road.. and it would take to much longer for the area to be forgotten.  

I arrived at the RV Park in the French Quarter on Sunday around 5pm.  Jerimiah would be arriving about an hour later.  The first order of business was doing laundry, and getting a bite to eat at Mr. B's Bistro for dinner.  I love their Pear Cosmo, and Bacon Wrapped shrimp on a bed of the most creamy BBQ Shrimp.  My mouth waters just thinking about it.
Jerimiah had never been to New Orleans before, so there was a lot for him to see.  I warned him before he left Austin, that NOLA was not a place to be "a mark".  Not the town to be wandering around in off your guard.  Drunks are targets.  Anything easily taken, has already been taken. 
It wasn't until we left the RV Resort, and made the first turn to head to the Quarter, that Jerimiah saw what was actually going on around him.  He then admitted he sort of blew off my warning about the city.. but now says, "I get it.. seriously.. I had no idea."  Good.  
The second day was spent in some of the largest Cemeteries in New Orleans.  Spent about 4 hours shooting.  Saw things I've never seen before, including the Memorials below. 
Iron gates, zydeco, skinny tall doors, the smell of urine, loud revelers, trash, and slow walking bums.  All of it... I took it all in. 
My 5th time to New Orleans, and it didn't disappoint.  While waiting for Jerimiah to capture the things he was seeing in the cemetery, I noticed I wasn't shooting.  I had already shot these things a few times over...  and at that moment I decided I was done with New Orleans.  At least for the next 5 years or so. Other things to see.