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Watch out for Grenades!
As you can see in the picture here, Jason is just entering the Hand Grenade zone for the evening, with little or no hope of returning sober.
Most mixed drinks in New Orleans skip the weak ingredients and go straight for the grain alcohols, which normally are 200 proof, or roughly the same potency of rubbing alcohol. Since they are mixed in with other flavors and liquids, the harsh alcohol is normally blended into a nice drink, but the fact remains... you will become intoxicated!
Enjoy your Mardi Gras, but be safe!
People Passing out on the Streets
Thanks to the efforts of enterprising alcohol sales people, many people end up down and out on the streets of the French Quarter. As reminded in an earlier tip, I mentioned that the drinks here are made with grain alcohol and can really knock you for a loop.
This young man is not having the best time at Mardi Gras thanks to his ability to not say no to all the excess alcohol.
Drink Safely and enjoy your Mardi Gras!
Beware of Intoxicated Rugby Players
One of the things most dreadful when it comes to a great evening out is running into a group of intoxicated rugby players. Any person who regularly goes out onto a field with no pads on in a game in which 15 people are out to tackle him is clearly a glutton for punishment. Mix this with an innane desire to sing songs and drink alcohol and you have a recipe for disaster!
Beware of your surroundings and do not let drunk rugby players come up from behind!
Most New Orleans drinks are very sweet and tasty. You have no idea how strong they are until you try to stand up. In addition, New Orleans is hot and humid and a cold drink is always very refreshing. Put these 2 together and you can get into trouble. So pace yourself. You'll want to remember the great time you're having, and more importantly you need to keep safe.
Many people underestimate the wrath of New Orleans' heat and humidity. After a night out and about enjoying the 3 for 1 beers and shots at Razoos or splitting a bottle of wine at Arnaud's, it's important to continuously drink water so as not to suffer from heat exhaustion and dehydration during your trek the following day. Sometimes, the heat coupled with humidity can be intolerable -- even for the locals. Keep yourself as cool as possible.
Be Street Smart
New Orleans is a high crime city because of the sheer number of tourists and the 24 hour drinking. People get there and go nuts, drink more than they ever would. Because a drunk target is an easy one, there are a lot of opportunities for theives. Be street smart, aware of your surroundings and know the way back to your hotel.
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These highly-trained polymaths are well-versed in languages, accountancy and psychology. They use the sharpest of wits and cunning to mentally disarm ill-prepared adversaries. They punch out of their weight and can fell the most worthy opponent in one sentence.
Approach with care and ply with beer until inebriated. Now they are vulnerable to feminine charms.
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Restrooms are Hard to Find
Bathrooms in the French Quarter are often hard to find (especially during Mardi Gras). During the day, try you can try Jackson Brewery and the Riverwalk. Around Bourbon Street is is particularly difficult unless you are at a restaurant or bar there. If you go into one of these, most will insist that restrooms are only for customers. You can try the larger hotels in the area and look like a guest. You will usually find bathrooms somewhere on the ground level.
Watch how much seafood you...
Watch how much seafood you eat! I ate too much and got a mild rash. Watch what you drink a few friends were slipped something in a bar in teh middle of the day and ended up sleeping their last night away. Just be careful and watch because Bourbon street and the french quarter can be dangerous if you aren't aware of your surroundings. but it is a hell of a good time so don't let this scare you go and have a great time and take LOTS of pictures.
The signature drink of the Tropical Isle on Bourbon. Have one...they're actually very good...but be aware that it's mostly grain alcohol or 151 and anyone who drinks one will be in a world of drunkness before they even realize it! Especially on top of whatever else you've had. Have fun but be aware.
By the way...don't even try to carry a Hand Grenade with you into any other Bourbon St bar (or even the souvenir grenade cup)...they have no qualms about telling you to leave. Competition I guess.
Down on Bourbon
Drinking on Bourbon will be expensive, No doubt about it. Expect to spend at least 60 to 100 bucks in a 2 hour time period. A way to get around this is to get a backpack with an Ice cold 6 pack of beer( aluminum cans) No glass and stroll around Bourbon. If you want a cheaper non touristy area go to Frenchman street on the other side of Esplanade where the beer is average price and this is where the locals go to enjoy the night life.
Ethanol has the fantastic ability to alter perceptions of balance, judgement and beauty.
Sadly, many a good man has come unstuck through feminine wiles whilst under the influence. For this reason, I vote that beer-goggles are a major warning in New Orleans.
In the state of inebriation, as my comrade Shane can ably testify, each female is the apogee of perfection.
Gentleman, and gentle ladies, you have been warned.
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Keep Your Wits, Don't Drink Too Much!
Many travellers feel that because they are on vacation, nothing bad can happen to them. In New Orleans (which has the distinction of having the highest murder rate in the nation) this is simply not true.
One of the best ways to ensure that you are robbed, roughed up, or worse is to get falling down drunk and then wander the streets.
There is plenty of temptation, especially with the daquiri shops and other places that offer To-Go alcohol. Drink responsibly, and if you can't drink responsibly, make sure you have a "babysitter" with you to make sure you make it home in one piece.
Don't make yourself easy prey... you may not have what you think is the "full experience" of New Orleans, but you'll also have a better chance of keeping your wallet in your pocket and your teeth in your mouth, where they belong.
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