Tag Archives: K-Paul’s Louisiana Kitchen

Road Trip 2014: Restaurants

Grand Canyon Lodge, North Rim, Arizona

Grand Canyon Lodge, North Rim, Arizona–the dining room is on the left

My husband Tom and I have been on a road trip since January 2, 2014. I want to write about our journey in some—as yet unspecified—epic, metaphorical piece, but I have been finding it difficult to get these—as yet unformed—thoughts into the computer. Experiences and ideas swirl around in my head, but I can’t focus. I think I will start writing about simple, finite topics (e.g., restaurants, bookstores, campsites, hikes, medical misadventures) and hope that concentrating on them will help some of the other ideas settle down and organize themselves.

Path of our trip, in brief: Virginia, Maryland Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Ohio, West Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Maryland, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, Colorado, Utah, Nevada, California, Nevada, Oregon, Idaho, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Nebraska, Iowa, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, District of Columbia, North Carolina, South Carolina Note: we plan on being in Maryland, Virginia, and Pennsylvania before year’s end.

Finite Topic #1: Favorite Restaurants

First, a minor confession: Tom and I are, some would say, foodies.* So, although we have shared many camp meals and picnics, we have ended up going to restaurants more than one might think for a couple of (would-be) adventurers. As Tom says, in our defense, we met in a restaurant— Grand Canyon Lodge in 1971—so, really, all this restaurant going is just a logical progression of how we started our journey together.

Anyhow, you can see from the list above, where we’ve wandered. For the amount of places we’ve traveled and eaten in, one might think we would have a long list of restaurants to recommend, but no, we have a list of six favorite restaurants from the whole trip. While there were plenty of okay, pretty good, or good meals, there are entire states, regions, and interstate highways where we didn’t find food that we loved.** Here’s the restaurant list:

Lunch in New Orleans

Lunch in New Orleans


I don’t want to critique the restaurants any more than to say that, in each place, we enjoyed tasty meals made with real ingredients and cooked and served by professional, friendly people.


Heading into Alicia's

Heading into Alicia’s

Saigon Bowl, Denver

Saigon Bowl, Denver

*Yes, we travel with whole nutmeg, Sriracha, smoked paprika, and the dowel rolling pin Tom made me.

** That’s not counting the delicious food we have shared with family and friends along the way.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Scat Happens

Sedona, Arizona
I’ve cheered up and warmed up since my last post.  However, as you probably figured from the title of this post, life continues to—um—provide fine opportunities for growth, such as:

      • the (mostly) nonexistent ice and snow that closed almost everything in New Orleans, but not K-Paul’s Louisiana Kitchen or Café Du Monde,
      • the bad gas from Murphy USA in Del Rio, Texas, which sickened our F-150, but we received the reimbursement for the repairs right away,
      • the day after Tom and I completed a hike in the Chisos Basin (The Window), I tripped on  nothing on a little hike and sprained my wrist*, but then when I was icing my hand on the lodge veranda, I saw a Colima warbler

        Early morning, Chisos Basin

        Early morning, Chisos Basin

      • my map-reading skills are not tip-top, but we finally got to Mesa campground in the Gila National Forest before total dark.
        Mesa campground, Gila National Forest

        Mesa campground, Gila National Forest

        The lake was way down from (I assume) the drought and the campground exuded a down-at-the-heel gloom, but I am pretty sure that on my early morning trek to the bathroom, I smelled mountain lion.  I think the scat was fresh, too. (I didn’t photograph the evidence, but here’s some from another hike):

Scat, Saguaro National Park

Scat, Saguaro National Park

Scat happens, but sometimes it turns out to be something you’ve been waiting for.

Or, as W. B. Yeats said in a slightly more high-tone way:

I am content to live it all again
And yet again, if it be life to pitch
Into the frog-spawn of a blind man’s ditch,
A blind man battering blind men;…
I am content to follow to its source
Every event in action or in thought;
Measure the lot; forgive myself the lot!
When such as I cast out remorse
So great a sweetness flows into the breast
We must laugh and we must sing,
We are blest by everything,
Everything we look upon is blest.

From “A Dialogue of Self and Soul” by William Butler Yeats in The Winding Stair and Other Poems

*I found out yesterday that I sustained a comminuted distal radius fracture.  So much for the power of positive thinking, and, yes, I am typing this with my left hand.
Note: I have more in my mind than I can get on the computer today. Please expect Scat Part II shortly.