Post AAD Wrap Up
Well, the fun and games are over and I sit exhausted at the airport waiting for my flight. My Authors After Dark experience was wonderful. I meet a lot of great readers, bloggers, and writers. The book signing was fun, even though I missed a couple of authors I wanted to see. But that’s what I get for coming later (I hate waiting in line). The masquerade ball was grand! Everyone looked beautiful and the costumes were interesting. I enjoyed some informative panels, especially the one on Self Publishing and Multiple POV.
It was fascinating being back in NOLA after all these year. The last time I was in the city I was in high school. Actually, now that I think about it, it wasn’t THAT long ago;) I did learn something important. Bourbon Street is too much stimulation in my delicate years. There was a time I loved and thrived in the madness, but not anymore. If I go back, I will reside much further away from the drunken hedonism.
I also used this opportunity to spend some time with the first love of my life. Me and the baby girl hung out all over the Big Easy, eating and shopping. We had wonderful meals at several restaurants. We shopped shoes and clothes on Canal. We were art voyeurs on Royal. We picked through all kinds of goodies in the French Market. We ate beignets at Cafe du Monte, mostly at 12 or 1 in the morning. One of our favorite places for dinner was Oceana on Conti (best catfish poboy ever!) My daughter had a monster burger at the Cajun Cabin on Bourbon. I had the most deletable thing called a Crawfish Dressing Ball at a place called Deannie’s. These are all must visits if you go to NOLA. Very casual but delicious!
Now, those who know me know I’m a bit of a hotel snob, at least that’s what I’m told. The Royal Sonesta was not a hotel I might have normally chosen to stay at, but it was where the conference was being held. I give the hotel a thumbs up on the cleanliness of the rooms. It is one of the few places the linen didn’t make me break out in hives. My cons are relatively few for me. First, the elevators MUST be replaced. They were very slow and on the second day it got stuck between floors and I had to jump out while the maintenance people pry open the doors. Epic fail! My second pet peeve is the front desk staff. They were very nice, but not real helpful. They charged me for 7 days of parking when I was only there for 4. When I asked about a UPS or Fedex box for shipping, they brought me a Mr. Coffee appliance box. When I asked about weighing to ship items, I got the blank stare and then a shrug. I’m used to hotels where I give my stuff tot he front desk, they package and ship and bill me. Then when me and DD ate at the hotel restaurant, Desire, the food seemed old. To top it all off, when our waitress was preparing bread for someone else, she touched the loaf with her bare hand to test the temperature. That was my final straw. We left and went back to Oceana’s to eat. So, needless to say, this hotel made my list of not to visit.
Outside of the walking, conferencing, and just hanging, we went of a great tour of New Orleans. It took us everywhere from the French Quarter to the Garden District to the Ninth Ward. It was amazing to see there is still a lot of people who are recovering from Katrina. The houses on Charles Ave were gorgeous. We visited the house of one of my favorite authors, Anne Rice. All in all it was a adventure packed trip.
While it was fun and I’m glad I got to hang with mini me, I’m exhausted and thrilled to be going home!