angels against the bluest sky

We received some very wise advise before our trip to New Orleans.  We were told to do the very touristy thing of taking a tour.  It sounded rather delightfully relaxing to me and it would have been a great way to see certain parts of the city.  We contemplated a cemetery tour and a bayou tour, but in the end and I suppose due to the shortening of our trip (travel mishaps) we opted not to take any tours.

On our second full day of this honeymoon adventure, we decided to venture out of the French Quarter and make our way to City Park.  After a stop for lunch at Cafe Degas, we started walking to the park and found ourselves strolling alongside a cemetery.  A tour shuttle was just loading so we headed towards where the tourists had just departed.  All this fit right into our intentions of wandering and tickled me to no end that we unknowingly ended up at a place where we might have paid for a tour.  It was Saint Louis Cemetery Number 3, not the one with Marie Laveau's grave but that didn't matter at all.

The blue of the sky that day was so deep, so rich, so vibrant.  It was such a dramatic backdrop to the gothic statues above the crypts.  These crypts don't really need such a backdrop to make them beautiful but certainly it adds to the whole intense effect, don't you think?


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This cemetery was nearly all underwater during the aftermath of Katrina and evidence of it could be seen in the wall vaults, the brown line of the water clearly visible as we walked by.  Where as the wall vaults were cracked and crumbling, the larger mausoleums seemed totally untouched.

I must tell you that in my life I have seen the most beautiful cemetery in the world.  It sits a top a foothill of the Himalaya Mountains, the graves and mausoleums starting near the top and dropping down the wild misty hillside surrounded by rhododendron trees and off the to the distance a clear view of the year-long snow-capped peaks of the highest and youngest mountains of the world.  This little cemetery and not even the most famous one of New Orleans came close (possibly because of this impossibly blue sky) to that other one of my childhood, albeit in a starkly different sort of beauty, but a gorgeous morbid beauty nonetheless.

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