I was excited about my first trip to the “Big Easy”. The city of New Orleans has a reputation for serving up the best food, jazz, and hospitality of any place in our country plus I am a devoted fan of Drew Brees and the Saints. My hubby and I flew out of LA the weekend before Thanksgiving and arrived at our destination by early evening. After grabbing our luggage, Derrick approached a gentleman standing in that area to inquire about a shuttle service. He informed us that his client had not shown up and he was available to drive us to our hotel. During our conversation, Jerry revealed that he is the pastor of a church and opened up about his personal life, including that his wife, Norma was in the hospital recovering from heart surgery. We connected with him as if he was part of our family. I told him that we would pray for his wife and assured him that she would heal quickly. Before Jerry drove off, we asked if he was available to drive us back to the airport on the following Tuesday. Not only did we want to support his local business, but we preferred his company as well.
We covered a lot of territory during our short stay in New Orleans and agreed that a bus tour would familiarize us with the surrounding areas. Our guide was very informative as we drove by historic parks, cemetaries, and passed through the neighborhoods ravaged by Hurricane Katrina. We ventured out each morning into the drizzling rain to hop onto a trolley and discover more incredible restaurants and live jazz venues. I savored the buttery pecan waffles dripping in syrup or the sweet beignets coated in powdered sugar for breakfast. It was a neverending feast of gumbo, jambalaya, pecan-crusted catfish, and icebox key lime pie.
Tuesday morning came around quickly and we were met in the hotel lobby by our new friend, Jerry. We inquired about his wife’s health and he reassured us that she would be coming home for Thanksgiving. It was truly divine timing and such a blessing to connect with such an incredible person while on vacation. I am so thankful for my life and our extended family and friends!