Brown's Journal

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Location: Wake Forest, North Carolina, United States

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Louisiana Journey

At eight o'clock in the morning on Tuesday February 24, 2009, we rolled out of Wake Forest in a caravan consisting of a motor home, a fifteen-passenger van and a five passenger Avalon. There were 24 of us: twelve Damings, 4 interns and seven Browns. After sixteen hours on the road we arrived in Slidell where we had rented a beach house on Lake Pontchartrain. We could see the Pontchartrain causeway and the railway bridge that goes to New Orleans. The house was surrounded by water. The Damings stayed at a campground in Covington.
The purpose of the trip was to help with the preparations of and to attend the wedding of Phillip Bradrick and Katie Valenti on Saturday the 28th. The Scott Browns and the interns worked very hard to make everything run smoothly.
Bill and I came along for the ride and the wedding.
On Wednesday, we went to pay our respects to the Valenti and Bradrick families at the Valenti home in Mandeville, 30 minutes from our house. We wanted to help in any way that we could. Mary, Claudia and the interns folded forks into napkins and tied them with ribbons. Deborah was the wedding coordinator and spent the day at the different venues for the rehearsal dinner, the wedding and the reception.

After the wedding and the reception, Phillip and Katie hopped in the back of a pick up truck to say good-bye and be off on their honeymoon.  The guests were given all kinds of noise makers to give them a rousing send off. 

Phillip and Katie are happily anticipating the wedding day. This picture was taken two days before the wedding.

At the rehearsal dinner, we got to sit with Phillip,s 90 year old grandmother, GranMa Sally,who flew from Washington. Her granddaughter, Brittany, also from Washington was her traveling companion. Scott must be saying something very profound.

On Thursday, Deborah, Blair and Claudia left to tend to the miriad details of the family dinner. The rest of us drove to New Orleans via the Pontchartrain causeway to have breakfast at the Cafe Du Monde in the French quarter. This is the site of the original market. We feasted on Beignets and chicory coffee. 

It was a mile and a half to the World War II Museum. Most everyone walked but Barry insisted on a carriage ride for Nadine, Daniel, Adam, Noah, Isaac and Bill and me.  There were no protests.

This church is across the street from the Cafe Du Monde. Pope John Paul II visited here.
Beside the Cafe Du Monde is Washington square. This is a canon from the Revolutionary War.

Andrew Jackson is in Jackson Square.
Here is a look at the French Quarter. You can see the filagree iron railings on the building but it is very typical of architecture.
The modes of the street car is a reminder that the street cars are coming back.
The National WWII Museum houses the history of the European theater and the Pacific theater as well as some of happenings on the home front.

Scott and Barry Daming are eager to board this Higgins Boat. This museum was built in New Orleans in memory of Andrew Higgins who built the landing craft for the war in the Pacific and Europe in New Orleans. He was one of the three boat builders who were asked to design a shallow water landing craft and Higgins won.  He had already been building boats used in the swamps and bayous so it was a natural progression to landing craft. There is a Higgins boat in the Museum of the Pacific War in Fredericksburg, TX.
This is a fiber optic film showing the scope of the Pacific War.
Scott has a jeep just like this that he uses for Memorial Day.
Penicillin was available to the Military during the war but not to the public until the 1946. There was still a limited supply. 

Back home in Wake Forest and having dinner with Kelly and Peter in their home in Rolesville. What a joy to be feasting at the table of our Granddaughter.  There are four generations at the table even though they are not all visible. 
Deborah and Claudia are enjoying Triumph and Knox.
Here are Peter, Kelly, Claudia, Blair, Triumph, Deborah, Knox, Mary, Bill. Scott and David were in Indiana at a Home School Leaders Conference. 
One day Claudia's cousin, Hannah Jones came for a visit. They had fun exploring in the golf cart.
Claudia and Hannah made cookies and prepared a beautiful and delicious tea to which I was honored to attend.
The best is saved for the last. Our great-grand-babies are Triumph who is 20 months old and Knox who is 4 months old. They are so much fun.