Mardi Gras, by Valentina O’Brien

So I know that we are well into Lent and Mardi Gras has come and gone. There are no more parades or king cakes. I still don’t feel like I have fully recovered and beads still control a major part of our house. I figured I would still share a bit of my experiences because it is one of the biggest events of the year.
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Before moving to New Orleans, I didn’t really have a concept of what Mardi Gras was like. I pictured a weekend, maybe 5 days, with some parades and parties. I didn’t know New Orleans celebrates carnival for a month and that there are weeks of parades. Some days have as many as 5 parades. I counted that over the course of a couple weeks, I went to 31 parades. Here they are: Krewe du Vieux, Cork, Oshun, Cleopatra, Pontchartrain,Choctaw, Sparta, Pygmalion, Chewbacchus, Carrollton, King Arthur, Barkus, Ancient Druid, Nyx, Babylon, Muses, Chaos, Hermes, Krewe d’Eta, Morpheus, Iris, Tucks, Endymion, Okeanos, Mid-City, Thoth, Bacchus, Proteus, Orpheus, Zulu, and Rex. It was, needless to say, exhausting. I don’t think I will ever go to that many again in one year.

The stands outs were King Arthur (just because Pastor Fred was in it), Barkus (all dog parade in the Quarter), Nyx (new all women’s parade), Hermes (really beautiful floats), Iris (all around fun, cool theme, floats, and throws), Tucks (rowdy and toilet themed), Proteus (each float was an old krewe), Orpheus (Harry Connick Jr.’s musical themed parade. Cool this year because each float was a past theme), Zulu (more than 42 floats in one parade – and I got a coconut), and Rex (Last major parade of the season).
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