Hotel Monteleone

Sis is having a pretty hard time dealing with the side effects of last week’s chemotherapy and Neulasta shot. The pain is not well controlled at this point. The nausea and digestive cramping are making Sis sick. The fatigue overwhelms her. To say she is sick doesn’t really express the full truth of her illness. Today is one of the days it is undeniable that she is a cancer patient.

Before the cancer metastases were found, Sis and I were planning a fabulous once-in-a-lifetime sisters’ trip to New Orleans. We speak honestly together about the risks of her cancer, and decided to take an extravagant, over-the-top trip to New Orleans together this December before the cancer came back. Our plan was to stay at The Hotel Monteleone in the French Quarter. Have a look. It is old world, classic New Orleans fantastic!

Getting to the Big Easy from South Bend is a big easy on Amtrak. The South Shore commuter train to Chicago, a quick taxi ride to Union Station, and then a single train ride into New Orleans. It’s a bit of a long ride, about 19 hours, but most of it is overnight with an early afternoon arrival in NOLA. Easy!

Most of our time would be exploring restaurants, shopping, and all the fun touristy things I love about New Orleans. The Christmas lights and Celebration in the Oaks at City Park were a definite. We planned to indulge in a driver to take us to the beaches on the Mississippi shore and to the casino in Biloxi our cousin, the architect, designed.

We won’t be going this year unfortunately, but hopefully the week before Mardi Gras next spring. And with Mom, too.

In the midst of trauma, it’s important to hang on to the promise of a beautiful future and whatever brings you joy and peace. Planning for a whole week at The Hotel Monteleone with my mom and sister sharing all of my favorite parts of New Orleans with them brings me great joy.


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