- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 6, 2006

NEW ORLEANS - Along St. Charles Avenue, the streetcar tracks are partially hidden by grass and dirt. Majestic oak trees drape their branches over the road, a canopy of beautiful green leaves and dark wood. Early morning sun shines through on the joggers as they run in between the tracks, sweating from the morning heat, the clothes darkening in the thick air.

They run past huge, beautiful old houses with ornate woodwork and wrap-around porches, some flying purple flags with a golden Fleur De Lis. Hanging above them on the streetcar wires are Mardi Gras beads, and old shoes. Small things of the past that remind you of today.

On Decatur Street, at Cafe Du Monde, in the cool shadows, in the corner along the old white wall, the waiters sit in chairs, lined up next to each other, their bow ties and crisp white shirts neatly pressed, their paper hats sit neatly on their heads. The small round tables are arranged with napkin holders and sugar dispensers.

Navigating past tables of tourists and early rising locals, they carry trays of cafe au lait and beignets, fried dough piled high with powdered sugar. Out on the sidewalk, a man plays the trumpet as a horse and carriage pass by and tourists take pictures of Jackson Square with happy snap cameras.

Off in the distance, the sounds of hammers and saws. Many of the famous magnolia trees are dead, but hearty oaks are thriving. Birds chirp during morning cups of coffee with the paper. A man and a woman stroll past with a baby and a dog. The blue tarps still cover missing roofs, and front yards are still crowded with FEMA trailers, but life moves forward on these quiet streets, steady and slow and sure. Life moves forward.

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times is switching its third-party commenting system from Disqus to Spot.IM. You will need to either create an account with Spot.im or if you wish to use your Disqus account look under the Conversation for the link "Have a Disqus Account?". Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide