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Easter Sunday in New Orleans: Swampland and Parades by Ann Treacy
April 2, 2013, 12:16 am
Filed under: New Orleans

Easter Sunday we woke up and went to the swamp for an alligator hunt on an air boat. Remember the big swamp boat with the propelling fan at the back from that old 70s show Flipper? Well that’s what we were on. It sat about 15. Aine scored the seat of honor at the top near the driver. I was very jealous and must learn how to cute it up for next time.

Kate was really the driver for checking out the alligators. And it was a really good call. It was so much fun! Not necessarily cheap, but I’d do it again in a heartbeat. The swamp we visited was family-owned and used primary for the tours. We were one of about 6 boats that seemed to be out on the swamp. But it didn’t feel like Disney ride or anything – I think we all felt that we were on a hunt of sorts. We saw tons of alligators and some turtles, bald eagles and cows!

I learned a few things about alligators – so I have my fingers crossed for it being an upcoming Pub Quiz topic! Here are some of the more interesting (or at least memorable) facts:

  • A baby alligator has 1-2 percent chance of making it to 6 feet (adulthood)
  • Alligators like white food – like marshmallows
  • An alligator egg is worth $18-22
  • It takes a 6 foot alligator to make a boot (a pair of boots starts at $1200 – I wear 6.5 if you’re shopping!)
  • There are 3.3 million alligators in Louisiana
  • A bayou is a path through the swamp

But mostly the trip was just really cool. It was fun to be in the boat thing. It was fun to see – and hold – an alligator. It was fun to see terrain so different from what we’re used to seeing.

After the swamp tour we quickly got gussied up and headed out to the Easter Parade in the French Quarter. We thought we’d see it for a few minutes but the parade wound its way around the French Quarter as we snuck in out last must-do activities before hitting the road. Aine got a ton of necklaces. The floats toss out beads and other trinkets. And we finally got to try the beignets – which were delicious! And we soaked up the last of the fun spirit and sunshine of New Orleans.

Our funny last look was the fact that we had almost no gas when we got back into the van. Something we didn’t pay enough attention to – until we found ourselves on the raised highway above the swamp. There are no off road locations when you’re between a lake and a swamp. Also everyone melted down a little once we got into the car. So we have people spraying perfume, complaining about plugins (mobile wifi we can share, plugs, not so much), whining about being hungry (delicious as they are apparently beignets aren’t really lunch), a big rain storm started and we’re worried about running out of gas. Luckily it didn’t happen. We got gas, food, power, sleep and remembered rain isn’t like snow even if everyone in Louisiana seems to drive like it is.

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