I'm meant to be leaving New Orleans in 2 days for Miami: where the weather is warm, the guns are numerous, and the coke is as available as cola. As cool as that all sounds, I don't really want to leave the Bourbon House. It's too good here. All the other hostels I've stayed at have been cold and alienating, or had some sort of fatal flaw, but this place is amazing. The people here are the best.
Last night I stayed up playing Trivial Pursuit: The 90s Edition with Damon (from Florida) and Rachael (from Belfast). We were all pretty hopeless, so we ended up staying up til about 3am just talking. It was great. Today the bunch of us plus Rachael's brother Aaron, and James (New Yorker) went out to lunch on Decatur St at some place that had 1 dollar daiquiris.
This place is everything I hoped a hostel could be. I've never felt so comfortable and at ease with a bunch of strangers before. There aren't any uncomfortable silences. Even dodgy things that go on here are just a laugh to everyone.
The owner Reese, or Randolph as he is sometimes known, has a bunch of stories to tell. A series of unfortunate events kept occurring last week as he was checking in new guests. One night a car exploded down the road just as he was talking up the safety of the area. Two nights later, in a similar situation, a factory houses down was set alight in an insurance fraud scam. There were also more stories about a bus crash, and teenagers shooting at the building with BB guns. It sounds scary on paper, but all these things were such a hoot to hear about. And there wasn't much real danger for any of these situations.
I'm going to miss this place. I'm pretty much decided that I have to move on, but I really don't want to. If I stay I'll run out of things to do and get bored. I'm already a bit antsy. But I won't soon forget the fun I've had here and the awesome people I've met. I think I have most of them on facebook now, which is good.
I should be optimistic. Each city I've visited so far has been better than the last. Maybe the next place will be even better...
It's been pissing with rain, and the dodgy shade cover thing out the back collapsed under the weight of the rain that had accumulated on it. All the metal pylons are warped and snapped. A bunch of us went out there and salvaged the furniture and outdoor lighting, laughing as ice cold buckets of rain hit us at random intervals. Not to mention the hidden buildups on the non-collapsed parts that we inadvertently dumped on ourselves. This place is fantastic.