Wednesday, January 25, 2012

A Gem in the Clearing

"Is this Moldaner's Camera Shop?" I asked. "I'm on Burdette Street, and my GPS indicates that I'm about two blocks from your shop. However, I'm in a residential area and don't see any businesses. And the one-way street is so narrow, I can't go any further."

An understanding response from Robert assured me that I was, in fact, just around the corner from his shop (left) and that the narrow streets in the area have stymied many others from finding a direct route to his business.

Fortunately, backing up for half a block was possible and a simple alternative route brought us to a hobbit-like setting of activity along a three-block section of Maple Street in the Uptown section (on South Carrollton Avenue near the Riverbend section of the St. Charles Streetcar route) in New Orleans.

It was as though we had emerged from the forest and found this clearing in which the residents could gather at Starbucks or PJs (left) and talk about "The Land Beyond" as they enjoy exotic coffees and teas--and foods.

Many of those who venture beyond the limits of this clearing are headed to the Lands of Tulane and Loyola*.

Others seem content to remain in the clearing and provide a welcoming setting for Outsiders who find their (our) way into this haven of good will. These hosts can be found at Jamila's, Singha Song Thai, the Chill Out Cafe (with American breakfasts and Thai cuisine) (left),

the Fresco Cafe, Ciro's Cafe, Bruno's Pub, or the Doors Pub (left) among others.

Before deciding upon a lunch site, we met with Robert (right), who talked about a number of good restaurants in the area in between questions and answers about my problems with the camera.

Without the camera problems, we would not have found this interesting neighborhood.

And one visit is not enough.

*nearby universities.

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