We're lucky. Here in New Orleans, after the holidays, we still have Carnival season to look forward to … and not just Valentine's Day, along with a cold and seemingly endless winter, like much of the rest of the country.
But what do we all do now that Mardi Gras is over?
I don't know about you, but I'm actually kind of glad that it's over. Between all the parades, friend's visits, general partying and not getting much sleep, I was exhausted by the time Ash Wednesday rolled around. In Ohio, when the holidays were over, I felt like the day after was just one big let-down with a side of sad trombone, but here, the day after Mardi Gras is like THANK GOD. I PERSEVERED.
But now that it's all truly over … what are we supposed to do?
Well, luckily we live in New Orleans, which means there is always something to look forward to. There is always something going on.
It's beginning, you guys! Now that I've lived here for a few years, this is something that I look forward to and can sense. It's like, you walk down the street and you smell the spices and you know that someone is boiling crawfish and you're like "WHERE IS IT?!" Yep. It's coming back.
Aside from all the parties and boils that people will inevitably be having, you can always find some out and about – usually on Fridays for the Lenten season. Also, there is my husband's favorite place, Perino's on the Westbank, which is always wonderful. And that's a recommendation from a New Orleanian right there, as my husband was born and raised here. Don't worry, if you go, you're not taking crawfish advice from an Ohioan.
The Saints season fizzled with a big fat nothing, but we can all still support The Pelicans!
St. Patrick's/St. Joseph's Day/Super Sunday
If you're missing days filled with beer and throws, you won't have too wait long. St. Patrick's and St. Joseph's Day celebrations next month will offer many options.
You can catch up on all the Oscar-nominated films, or you could take my advice and go see "Jupiter Ascending" while you still can. The winner of "Best Actor", Eddie Redmayne, plays a delicious villain and yet somehow he didn't win the Oscar for this particular movie – but he should have. Don't go see that abusive garbage masquerading as erotica, "Fifty Shades of Grey." Go see the Bechdel test-passing "Jupiter Ascending" instead. It's like, if the craziest fan-fiction you ever read got a Hollywood budget, you would get "Jupiter Ascending", and it is glorious.
My personal favorite:
Nice evenings spent at home.
What a strange concept. My 20-year-old self would be scoffing at my 30-year-old self.
You see, my 20-year-old self used to suffer from an affliction known as "but I might miss out on something cool" syndrome. I think I've recently grown out of it.
As I get older, the idea of spending the weekend at pubs/restaurants/parties/festivals etc., sounds less and less appealing. Sometimes I just want to not do things. We spend so much time doing things and then are made to feel strange or guilty if every single minute of the day isn't being taken up by some kind of task. That 2-hour window of time to yourself in-between work, cleaning, walking the dog, wiping yogurt off your kid's face, and folding laundry? That 2-hour window of time should be for something productive, dammit!
Why? Why do we feel the need to be productive 24/7? Why do we feel guilty if we sit on the couch for an hour and watch "The Walking Dead"? Without multi-tasking, I might add. Because when women are doing something like watching television, we're also usually doing about three other things.
I want to not be busy all the time. Being busy is for the birds. I'd like to read books and perhaps watch "Orange is the New Black" on Netflix. And I want to do it without feeling guilty about not being productive.
But then after a few weeks, I won't be able to stand it anymore. I'll be like, "I must leave the house! CABIN FEVER! SAVE ME!" And then just like that, it'll be time for Jazz Fest. Rinse. Repeat.