Sunday, through the intermittent rain showers that you just expect this time of year in Louisiana, we made our way across I-55 over the swamp to New Orleans. A week earlier, C had seen the obituary of an old friend on the side bar of NOLA.com. It had been years since we saw Alan; I actually had only met him once at the bar he worked. We had just started dating back in 2003 and it was a fun evening - dinner at La Crepe Nanou and then drinks at Feelings. I remember distinctly, I wanted a chocolate martini and Alan had never made one...but he made it for me that night.
A couple years ago, we found ourselves down in the Faubourg Marigny once again, this time for a concert at NOCCA. It was our anniversary and decided to visit Feelings once again and catch up with Alan. We knew something was wrong when we asked for him and they sent the owner. With very little detail, we gathered he was sick and had been sick for some time. C got a phone number but despite trying to find him for years, we never did.
But true to its people and their love for one another; it was a beautiful and fitting remembrance of a life well lived. It was even noted that it was during a Saints game and the place was still packed! I hate death, I typically go out of my way to avoid any type of funeral or memorial especially since going toe to toe with it in 2011 with cancer. New Orleans and its people though, have away of making you feel like no one is ever really gone; ghosts are most welcomed. Most moments were filled with laughter, a recall of funny stories, even a poll of who had seen him naked - it was a better part of the entire courtyard and adjacent bar!
I happened to find on HULU Sunday night, the locally made documentary, The Big UnEasy. It's fantastic and gives a very good primer on why New Orleans fell during Katrina and why it can not truly get back up - most importantly tho, it makes a good argument of why we shouldn't give up on this special place and its people. One of those, one of New Orleans most colorful residents and best bartenders is remembered here if you needed just one more reason to love New Orleans.
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