Had all gone as planned, we would have stopped at Nottoway, Louisiana: "We will dock at Nottoway for a field trip by boat to explore a bayou where we'll learn about local history, the lives of inhabitants, and the wildlife that inhabit these waters. Residents typically include American alligators, Ibis, turtles, herons, raccoons, egrets, and snakes. The cypress tress and lush vegetation make this an incredible ecosystem."
Instead the boat cruised overnight from New Madrid to an out-of-the way landing north of Memphis. The closed river had backed up cruise boats as well as tows to every conceivable landing and we had to take what we could get. The Road Scholar bus taking us to New Orleans negotiated a narrow country road and then a dirt track through a cotton field to meet us.
The boat's crew hauled our luggage up the steep and primitive landing to bus, so we didn't have to carry anything ourselves.
It was a long trip. The only bit of scenery I caught was this collection of cotton bales.
A recent change in harvesting cotton is the development of picker/balers. Instead of being hand gathered in great sacks, or collected by mechanical harvesters and blown into large cotton trailers, or even packed into large square bales, cotton is now picked and packed into round bales to be taken to the gin.
We debated whether the color of the wrapping had any significance. It turns out that yellow was the original color, but pink was introduced to support breast cancer awareness. A portion of the sales funds research. There is also a less expensive blue wrap suitable for some applications.
It's no longer dem old cotton fields back home.
After arriving in New Orleans, we checked into the Hotel Monteleone, a favorite place where Jim and I have stayed many times. And my parents. And my grandparents.
That evening we enjoyed supper with a jazz combo providing entertainment.
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