Melva Gomez Blog: Day 5

With today being our last day of the trip, I am going to reflect on some of our favorite stops along the way.

The restaurants that I was able to go were amazing. The way I choose my top three was based on my experience, service, food, and cleanliness.

Third: Constantine‘s in Mobile, Alabama. Though their hummus and pita chips were tasty, their charma chicken was messy–in a good way.  I would highly recommended if you by happen to be around Mobile, Alabama.

Second: Cafe Du Monde is right beside the Mississippi Port in New Orleans, Louisiana. From the seating area, you can see Jackson Square, Market Street, and the heart of the French Quarter.  The Beignets are the reason people come here!

First, the atmosphere at the Oceana Grill was lively and friendly. The food was the best I have ever had. It was here were I became a risk taker and had my first Oyster, ate Alligator sausage, tried Turtle soup and crème Brule. I was definitely stepping out of my comfort zone but the experience was worth it.

We went to three state Capitols: Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana.  My favorite was the capitol in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, home of the tallest one in the United States. Aside from the height of the building, it also has attractive decorations, down even to the unique illustrations on the doors.

Louisiana State Capitol

Ironically, the Governor of Louisiana, Huey Long, was murdered here in 1935, the capitol that he had built.  The Capitol is 450 Feet Tall and has an amazing view from the 27th floor. You can see the Mississippi Port and the bridge to your right and the beautiful downtown to your left.

Favorite States

Third: Louisiana. It is known for its Cajun food, it’s rich culture, and being the home of the LSU Tigers.  The weather was amazing and I really didn’t want our stay to end. I tired out several foods and expanded my horizons by visiting the World War II Museum and the state capitol.

Second: Mississippi. The state of Mississippi offered soul food, an interesting culture, and gorgeous views of nature. One of our more interesting stops was the Vicksburg National Military Park. This park has 1,800 acres filled with 1,300 monuments and is the largest National Military Cemetery of Union dead in the U.S., (17,000 graves). The park offered beautiful views of the sunset and the weather was perfect.

Junior Fellows at Vicksburg Battlefield

My favorite state was Georgia–particularly Savannah, which was filled with live oak trees branching together to make beautiful walking paths. Savannah has 21 unique squares and beautiful architecture.  it also has a beach about 15 minutes away, where we witnessed one of the most beautiful sunsets and picked up seashells.

The Beach at Tybee Island

Favorite Heights:

During this trip I challenged myself by facing my fear of heights.  We went to several high places during the trip, and these were my favorite:

Third: The Biloxi Lighthouse is an important icon and one of the most photographed structures in the southern United States. The staircase of the lighthouse was scary to climb because they were small, narrow, grated steps. But the view at the top was pretty, and it’s a photogenic structure.

Biloxi Lighthouse

Second: The Vulcan Statue’s view was breath taking and worth it, even though I had to walk around the grated top with 3-inch heels. I was on a structure that was more than 100 feet tall, overlooking the City of Birmingham, and I felt like a rock star!

Melva on the Vulcan Observatory Deck

First, Tybee Lighthouse was by far my favorite height. It was more than 150 feet tall with 178 stairs steps. The saving grace was that there is a resting platform every 25 steps.  But once you are at the top, you have an endless view of the Atlantic Ocean that is breathtaking.  It’s tough to describe just how gorgeous the view is, but it was sufficient to be my number-one height on the trip.

Melva on the Tybee Lighthouse Observation Deck


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