The First Person I Met in New Orleans

Upon our arrival to New Orleans, my mom posed with Ignatius J. Reilly on the Canal Street entrance to the Chateau Bourbon Wyndham, our hotel on the edge of the French Quarter– thankfully on the edge and not directly in the middle! I mentioned earlier that Ignatius is my favorite literary antihero to date; he’s the star in A Confederacy of Dunces, one of my favorite books. Luckily our room was an interior room facing the outdoor pool in the courtyard. It was quiet in our room and we slept great, unlike other guests who had rooms closer to the commotion (loud music and awful smell!) of Bourbon Street.

Our hotel occupies the building that used to be the D.H. Holmes department store which provides the setting to the opening scene of John Kennedy Toole’s book. The clock there above Ignatius is still the original.

Ignatius was just as snappy to us as I expected he would be. He was pretty judgmental as usual. Here’s what his plaque said at his feet:

“In the shadow under the green visor of the cap, Ignatius J. Reilly’s supercilious blue and yellow eyes looked down upon the other people waiting under the clock at the D.H. Holmes department store, studying the crowd of people for signs of bad taste in dress.”
This quote always cracks me up, because Ignatius himself insists on wearing a scarf and green hunting hat with earflaps in New Orleans weather. It was 86 degrees each day we were there, sunny, and extremely humid.

The only thing I love as much as travel would be books, so when these two loves collided in New Orleans, I knew we were off to a good start.

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3 Comments on “The First Person I Met in New Orleans”

  1. Karen April 26, 2011 at 19:33 #

    Books and Travel are also my two favorite things…ever! When they come together there is usually an epiphany of some sort…

    Unlike books and films, th film about Ayn Rand’s “Atlas Shrugged” is out. Although her philosophy is interesting, it has been hijacked by quite a few who I am sure espout her thoughts without the same meaning as originally intended.

    Anyway, great post, as usual!

    • Marisa LaValette April 26, 2011 at 20:53 #

      Thanks Karen!

      I didn’t know there is a movie out about Atlas Shrugged. Is it the same name?

  2. Loup Garou November 10, 2013 at 01:55 #

    I was looking for a photo of Ignatius on Google and this picture came up. And…your mom is kind of hot.

    -Loup Garou

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