the new awesome

whatever we are blogging about, that's the new awesome

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Deep South is the new awesome

As I mentioned, my younger sister just married a southern gentleman from Mississippi a few weeks ago, so over the weekend my California-bred family made the trek into the wild unknown of the South to become better acquainted with our new in-laws and get a taste for where the newest addition to the family had grown up. Once I got over the radical temperature changes (sweltering humid hot outdoors and frigid over-air-conditioned indoors) I was able to just get a feel for the area and enjoy the southern charms that I had heard so much about.

My dad brought a guide book so that we would have the most efficient vacation ever.

Wait a second. Why on earth are we trusting a guide book that BRAGS about it's number of National Chain Restaurant listings? I did not come all the way to Mississippi just to eat at Arby's. le barf.

I almost changed my mind when I saw that the Church's Fried Chicken chain restaurant's marquee signs tended to rival those of the Baptist church's as far as their entertainment value.


But luckily, the new inlaws are a bunch of foodies and took us to all their favorite New Orleans restaurants. I fell in love with shrimp remoulade, po-boys filled with fried eggplant and red sauce, seafood gumbo, and these tasty beignets doused with powdered sugar and chocolate milk.

Most of my vacation shots are not of the antebellum homes we visited or the wrought iron gates of New Orleans, but rather more embarrassing shots like this one of me pigging out on something:


Besides good eats, there are several other things that I noticed the South takes very seriously:

Jesus.

Cemeteries.

Bugs.
(Like this hairy visitor on the roof of the hotel, or the junebug that crawled on my neck and made me confirm that indeed, i do scream like a girl when in contact with gross crawly buggy things)

Fashion.

Floods and Hurricanes.
Not to end this post on a bad note, but it was amazing to see how much of New Orleans is still in disrepair after Katrina. So many houses are still spraypainted with the X marking how many living and dead were found in each home, and we saw acres of FEMA trailers and many still in use. Still, it was also amazing how many places had been fixed up as well, and to see people getting back on their feet and making New Orleans home again.

18 Comments:

  • At 6:31 AM, Blogger plainoldsarah said…

    ah, I went to new orleans once and inhaled powdered sugar from my bignet (sp?). breathe out whe taking a bite became my new mantra. i'm afraid to go back and see the disrepair.
    that roach shot is horrible. we saw a bowl full of live roaches in front of a grave - luckily that's as close as I got to the wildlife. ugh!

     
  • At 8:08 AM, Blogger Katie said…

    Hey, I was just going to make a comment about breathing OUT while eating a beignet!

     
  • At 8:40 AM, Blogger bex said…

    Breathing out is an important beignet eating lesson. The powered sugar all over the floor of the place we were eating them just went to prove how many people had learned it.

     
  • At 9:34 AM, Blogger ThomCarter.com said…

    The south is pretty awesome. When this Jersey boy had a job in Nashville he kept being called "That Yankee Kid" and ask "What do you know, you're a Yankee."

    I didn't understand because I am a Dodgers Fan!

     
  • At 9:42 AM, Blogger MissEm said…

    "Fashion" made me shoot my morning coffee out my nose. Too funny! Did you get to try pickle chips too?

     
  • At 10:02 AM, Blogger Aluwicious said…

    The south rocks! I married a southern boy... S.C. The nicest people ever:)

     
  • At 10:29 AM, Blogger nathaniel said…

    are there waffle houses everywhere there? i heard there was and i LOVE the waffle house!

     
  • At 2:05 PM, Blogger Jessica said…

    My soul is now screaming out for some Cafe Du Monde. Oh how I wish!

     
  • At 7:14 PM, Blogger f*bomb. said…

    O no way.
    That "fashion" shot just made me snort my deep fried powdered donut.
    I've never been to the Deep South. Mostly because I'm afraid they will string me up and kill me dead. Other than that, their accent and old-fashioned formality scores it big in my world.

     
  • At 10:06 AM, Blogger caroline said…

    i've only been to atlanta in the south but i loved it. so green and that southern food is amazing. biscuits and gravy and fried green tomatoes and peach cobbler. heaven. there was a place called "po' folks" that had all that and was SO GOOD. that was my inspiration for "soul food sunday."

     
  • At 5:37 PM, Blogger mandarin said…

    becca, i'm from the south and my husband and i actually went to new orleans for our honeymoon. i can't remember why we chose n'awlins (i think it was food-inspired, cuz i like food A LOT), but i don't regret it. the food is amazing, and the people are so interesting. different from joe-juh (georgia).

    i miss the beignets and poboys. have you had a muffaleta yet (spelling probably wrong) or zapps potato chips? the chips are ridiculously good. artery-clogging, but delish.

    btw, your blog is "my new awesome." i enjoy it, and i hope you don't mind that i stalk it...this is amanda (angel) faleschini, so it's not that freaky.

     
  • At 9:46 AM, Blogger veeda said…

    chain or not, Church's is yummy. But still not better than Popeyes.

     
  • At 2:46 PM, Blogger ZanzibarAnnie said…

    This is Leslie. Haven't talked to you in a while Bex, but I have to say, I am so glad that you made it to the South, particularly Mississippi, my home state! We Southerners might have the lowest literacy rates in the country, but we offset it by having the highest obesity rate in the country, so we know our cookin' if not our book learnin'. Church's is good, Popeyes is better, but Bojangles, a chain in North Carolina is the best. Come visit the South again! My parents live in Walthall Co., Mississippi, over the causeway, an hour and a half north of New Orleans.

     
  • At 11:23 PM, Blogger bex said…

    amanda! leslie! look at all the closet Southerners out there.

    you know how in church, they always tell the story about going to heaven, and seeing all your old neighbors, and they all get mad at you for not telling them about church before they died? well. that is kind of how i feel about you guys. i can't believe you never shared the joys of muffulettas or shrimp remoulade with me ; )

     
  • At 11:36 PM, Blogger Erica said…

    #1. i love church's chicken; #2. i want some of that new fashion; #3. love you girls

     
  • At 4:12 PM, Blogger ZanzibarAnnie said…

    We Southerners tend to live in the closet amongst the Yankees if our accents don't give us away, because of the stigma that comes from being from the South. Now that we know you are a supporter, we are more than happy to share our love of Southern cusine with you. Cheers to po' boys, 'nana puddin', and all those other treats that are missing letters.

     
  • At 12:14 PM, Blogger Damian said…

    are fellas allowed to post round here?

    anywhoos

    Another incredible culinary city in the South is Charleston, South Carolina.

    Serioulsy.

    But as much fine dinning that there is to be had, you have failed as a southerner if you don't stop at a waffle house for some pecan waffles late into the even'n.

    If you are still down south and want to see the real devastation from Katrina mosey over to Waveland . There are entire towns that are now missing.

    I was there a year later and there were still couches in trees, like 20 feet up.

     
  • At 8:15 PM, Blogger mandarin said…

    i grew up in the south, but i got away with not ever having an accent. someone the other day told me i did, and i thought she was craysee...

    i guess some words come out sounding "that way."

    i grew up in georgia, so our delicacy is catfish, crawfish, sweet tea, peach cobbler, pecan pie(pronounced pee-can, not puh-khan--so hoity toity), sweet potato pie, and boiled green peanuts. the last one sounds gross, but it is actually delicious.

    if you ever make it to georgia, savannah is the place to go. atlanta is cool, but it is like almost any other large city. you don't get the feel of the south, unless you go outside of it. everything outside of atlanta is all redneck. for real.

     

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