Janey and I took off at a canter from the hotel before 8:00am because we felt sure we’d be SUPER POPULAR with the rest of the team if we brought back coffee and beignets from Cafe Du Monde. The beignets were still hot and so was the coffee when we gathered in the lobby with the other gals and left a cloud of powdered sugar in our breakfast wake.
Before long we were off to the Houmas Plantation outside of New Orleans.
This plantation was the largest sugarcane producing plantation in the United States at one time prior to the Civil War. Over one thousand slaves lived and worked on this plantation at that time. None of the slave quarters exist now but the home itself is in good condition and the grounds are lovely. The tour guide led us around the premises with a deep southern accent and was so taken by Patty and Patty’s story that she wanted to share some prayer with her.
These moments are so special to all of us. Perfect strangers share themselves in such a personal way.
In the gift shop two dogs seemed to want special Patty-time too…
Jean had a restaurant recommendation for us for lunch…she knew we’d like CRABBY JACKS…and it was absolutely fantastic… The Po’Boy sandwiches are terribly hard to eat as there is so much seafood that it’s impossible to hold together the sandwich!
We returned to Sparky but not before Janey pulled me aside and said, “OH MY GOD!” I just got a text…MARCIA BALL is going to surprise Patty!!!! Marcia and Patty have been friends for a number of years…but Patty says she’s actually been a fan of Marcia’s music since the later 80’s. Marcia, who lives in Austin TX, is a five-time grammy nominated blues singer and pianist. USA Today has described her as a “sensation, saucy singer and superb pianist…where Texas stomp-rock and Louisianna blues-swamp meet.”
The plan was to head over to Pat O’Brien’s at 4:15pm one of Patty’s favorite places in all of New Orleans (where the Hurricane cocktail originated) for their Dueling Pianos live performances…
Trudi, Janey, and I headed over to Pat O’Brien’s with our unsuspecting Patty to meet up with Jean and Patti at 4:15…
and Patty was just overwhelmed! It was amazing! What a truly GRAND gesture from Marcia Ball. It meant SO much to Patty…So much!!!!
We chatted and laughed and got to know Marcia, and when the piano players started making music for us…we sang along, we cheered, we laughed…we celebrated life…and we made requests…
The pianist announced, “Hurricanes are a miracle cure for cancer!” before she began to sing Billy Joel’s hallmark song. We’re pretty sure she meant the yummy red drinks that taste like kool-aid and go down just as quickly…but she might have meant the impending tropical storm soon-to-be-hurricane Nate? Either way Patty is covered. Bring on the miracle!
The gals have teased me about how my husband and I went to a recent Jeffrey Osborne concert in St. Petersburg, FL to hear him perform our special song “On the Wings of Love” live. ..and so, of course, they requested the song be played… (Honey, they played our song ❤ ❤ ❤ !!!!)
And later on one of the gals requested the song “I just can’t wait to be KING” from the Lion King. Sort of an homage to last night’s photo sesh:
What a night! Patty’s husband, Guy, and his brother Paul and his cousin Joanne arrived and joined us too!
And we sang and we sang and we sang..
and we photobombed…and we sang…
and when we finally were too hungry to stay any longer we headed off arm in arm to find dinner nearby..
and thanks to Marcia…we had a BALL.
No evening is complete without an elevator selfie.
PS- The pork chops at NOLA are the best in the WORLD. Just ask Trudi.
And the Hurricanes at O’Brien’s are the best in the WORLD too. I just hope we feel the same way about them tomorrow morning…