I live in New Orleans. Maybe that doesn't make me all that regular. New Orleans is different, all in all.
|Dreams come true in New Orleans every day.|
The last time I saw Mingo, he invited me to join his "special" peppercorn club. I refused his offer and I continue to refuse it to this day. I still say, "Never."
The last time I saw Margarette, who is a member of The Jolly Time Peppercorn Club of Mid-City, she was pedaling her red bicycle, which has a yellow rear basket, down Eve Street surrounded by white doves.
When a pigeon is white, we call it a dove in New Orleans. When it is any other color, we call it a pigeon. Maybe that's the way it is where you live, too.
The only thing more beautiful than a snow white dove is a mother. If you don't know that, you don't know anything worth knowing.
Most of the time, the only time we see doves in New Orleans is in stained glass windows. Pigeons are everywhere. And, then, then, there is Margarette. Margarette is a freed spirit in a city full of free spirits. She refuses to drown.
And, then, there is Jimmie. The last time I saw Jimmie, he was at the Rendon Inn.
The next time I saw Jimmie, this afternoon, he was at Ralph's-on-the-Park, on City Park Avenue.
Believe the hype. Ralph's-on-the-Park is good enough. Nothing more, nothing less. It's nice.
|A view of City Park, New Orleans, across from Ralph's-on-the-Park, also in New Orleans.|
Ralph's-on-the-Park has bay windows that look from the dining room and from the bar out at City Park. Sometimes, in the distance, the train will go by. It's nice. Those people on the train always look so happy.
I visited Ralph's-on-the-Park every day for two years. Not anymore.
Ralph's-on-the-Park is convenient and it is on the way home if you live in this part of New Orleans.
Order the Vegas Strip during happy hour at Ralph's-on-the-Park. You won't be disappointed.
Ralph's-on-the-Park is a very popular place for its target customer demographic. You might love it.
"Margarette called off a meeting I was supposed to have with her tomorrow," I told Jimmie.
Jimmie was scratching his back when I said this. He finished scratching and, then, he paused before he said, "What happened?"
"She called it off," I answered. I didn't tell him he wasn't invited.
There was silence. It was a pregnant pause while the news sunk in. We didn't talk to each other. We kept to our own thoughts and listened to our own hearts. Shhhhh. You'll ruin it.
We were silent awhile and then the background music piped in from the ceiling got really, really loud. The couple at the other side of the bar asked the bartender to turn the speakers down.
It didn't matter if the Ralph's-on-the-Park soundtrack was loud or soft. Jimmie and I still didn't talk.
Management had to get involved. Caleb adjusted the volume.
When we did finally talk, with the music turned down, Jimmie went first. "I hear that heiress has been shanghaied," he said.
"Gert Town?" I started, "Hollygrove? Zion City? Hoffman Triangle? Pigeon Town? Black Pearl? Tulane? Is she at Touro Infirmary?" I nervously rattled off a couple more neighborhood names at random. My fear factor was running high.
Jimmie put a finger to his lips. We were silent some more.
|Everybody in New Orelans loves Dixie Beer.|
Jimmie and I sat next to each other a bit longer, still not saying anything. What else was there to do?
I went to the mens room.
When I got back, Jimmie went to the mens room.
The mens room is very clean at Ralph's-on-the-Park. I've never been in the ladies room enough times to comment on how clean that is.
I assume the ladies room at Ralph's-on-the-Park is as clean as the mens room. Jimmie and I talked about it one day when we didn't have anything else to talk about. We concluded that the ladies room has to be at least as clean as the mens room at Ralph's-on-the-Park. After all, they're ladies.
Emily got all excited and pointed out the window. "There goes Margarette on her bicycle!" Emily exclaimed.
"I didn't see anything," I said. I asked Jimmie, "Did you?"
Jimmie said, "I didn't see anything but I'll trust anything Emily says."
Emily said, "She looked like she was in trouble. She was headed uptown, lakeside."
Jimmie said, "If I were going to kidnap someone, where would I take them? I wouldn't take them to Navarre. That's where the community college is."
Jimmie was silent a while longer. When he was ready to talk some more, he turned to me. He said, "Do you remember that secret wine bar?"
I knew exactly where he was talking about.
To be continued.....
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