The USA 2010 photo album is now up but, since I haven’t really discussed the trip in much detail, I thought a quick summary of what we got up to so that the photos have some context. Some ground rules: no kicking, no biting, and absolutely no pointing out that half of these photos were technically taken in 2011.
A week late, I arrived in Baton Rouge around 9:30pm on Christmas Day. Jenna was at work (she agreed to work Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve in order to get the rest of the holiday off) so, after meeting their newly “aquired” dog, Jeff and I attempted to stay up, fuelled by Zombieland. Sadly Christmas Eve in the bar of the airport Hilton followed by 20 hours of travelling caught up with me as soon as the credits rolled; I was asleep and unstirrable when Jenna returned.
We soon made up for lost time, heading to Natchez in Mississippi to spend time with her parents (and mine). While there our exploration took us to Windsor Ruins, the handful of columns being all that remained of a once grand house, the Schafer House where the first shot was fired in the Battle of Port Gibson during the Civil War, Jefferson College, a former military academy, and Longwood, a sadly never-to-be-completed octagonal mansion.
We returned to Baton Rouge for a single night to catch the musical gang Jeff, Jesse and Matt playing their weekly gig at family restaurant Appleby’s, where Jesse is a manager. I’d seen the guys casually jamming at the house a few days earlier, which took me back to an evening I spent with Jesse and Jeff years ago, when they played a rather haunting acoustic cover of Tool’s H. I also finally met Morgan because, Jenna explained, it was vitally important that I meet Morgan and how had this never happened before? (Presumably this meeting has now averted a future world-threatening, space-time paradox; it felt like it was probably that sort of meeting.) Post-gig I disappeared with Jane and a friend of hers (apparently creating gossip) to what I shall affectionately describe as a karaoke dive. A stunning (female) rendition of Rush’s Tom Sawyer made the night though.
Jenna and I had the day to ourselves on her birthday, so we decided to go photographing together. We grabbed our cameras and ended up at Circa 1857, an old vintage/antique/art store. Also, they had hats. Lots of hats. On my final evening we built a wagon that had been bought as a Christmas present and took the kids to a nearby basketball court and playground. Although I nailed my first basketball shot in years, ultimately I think I confirmed it’s probably not my sport.
For those with access, there is a fuller rogues gallery of the people involved up on Facebook. Now that Facebook’s image quality has been drastically improved, I don’t mind putting photos up there quite so much, though this site will still be the first place to look.