Driving into Louisiana, I had a place to stay in New Orleans but wanted to hit more than just one city for the state. Another factor was the timing of the morning and my location and so I found some places to try my pop in approach.
First up was CrossFit Chivalry a veteran owned and operated establishment. I walked in and they were extremely kind and willing to sit and talk with me. I heard how they have a close community with events such as parties, competitions, and more that members show up for and support each other.
Feeling the success of my first meeting, I went to CrossFit 318 but they were in the middle of the class. I quickly got out my story to gauge some interest in my coming back and it was well received. I then left and tried a similar approach at Flying Tiger Brewery. It was a similar result as the owner was about to have a meeting but told me I could come back later in the day.
I had some success and barring any unforeseen setbacks, I would have a lot of progress before heading down to New Orleans. I killed some time before returning to CrossFit 318 and hearing how they have encountered people who are intimated by CrossFit, but when they talk, it’s explained that workouts and exercises can be modified so that anyone can join.
I then headed to Flying Tiger Brewery and over a beer and some snacks heard how a name with WWII connections drove the venture. That finished a good chunk of my meetings and it was time to drive on down to New Orleans.
Getting into New Orleans, my contact here were a girl I knew from middle and high school and her husband who I hadn’t yet met. This was a connection that I had through social media and it was a great illustration of the value and benefit of such resources can offer.
As timing played out, they were moving from one place, literally next door during the weekend I was in town. They apologized to me for the mess and not being able to be amazing tour guides. Talk about kindness! Meanwhile, I said it didn’t matter and I would try to do what I could to help move since I’ve helped a decent amount of people through the years. I’m fairly proficient at lifting objects repeatedly.
When I rolled in, they were taking it easy for the night, enjoying some beers on the front porch with some neighbors and friends. They offered me up beers and I happily gave them some that I had been acquiring from the nice breweries. We all ending up just hanging and chatting until the early hours of the morning.
The next day I helped move some things, but a great deal had already been completed the day before. They kindly fed me some breakfast and then I headed out on foot to a brewery that was less than a mile away.
I got there just as they were opening, and it seemed like the building was an old theatre. I told my story and the manager there said he would talk to the owner and it seemed likely I would have something that afternoon. I was happy. I had also heard that it was ok to drink with an open container and asked with the hopes that he would give me some beer for the walk back. That he did! I walked out a happy camper, a smile on the face, sunny day and beer in hand.
I walked along and then stopped to make sure no cars were coming before crossing the road. It was a one-way road and they would have to stop at the stop sign before driving onto the main road, but I like to be cautious. A car was coming in rather fast and I had my eye on them and they slowed down and stopped. It was a black SUV. I started to cross but kept a little peripheral glance on it and while getting to the midpoint of the car, all of the sudden I heard a roar and noticed the car moving! I bounded away from it about 3 yards and it only tapped my left leg. I was baffled and looked at the person who was looking up shocked from a cell phone in hand. I quickly got to the other side of the street and the car sped onto the main roadway.
I couldn’t believe what just happened! I thought that was a bit wild, then laughed that “technically” I was hit by a car, even though it just tapped me. Then I thought I was lucky it wasn’t more and that I noticed it and jumped away, otherwise it could’ve been worse. Then I laughed at spilling a little bit of beer and while a shame, all things considered, it wasn’t that big of an issue. I also thought it was a funny change, being all happy and jolly to a quick intense situation, and then back to easy going.
Arriving back to the house, the friends asked how it went, and I told them I was technically hit by a car which led to a fun reaction. I helped them a bit more and then decided to try another brewery. Even though the previous one had some hope, I was uncertain since I didn’t talk with the owner. To add to it, it was a Saturday and I was feeling the pressure of getting it done before Sunday which can be tough to get a meeting in.
I popped into Courtyard Brewing and saw the person that looked like the owner eating and enjoying a beer at the bar. It was a real open environment and they had a party hosted at the brewery, in the courtyard area. The person I identified happened to be the owner and was nice enough to talk with me and offered up a beer. While talking, I also had a chance to capitalize on some small Cuban sandwiches that were left over from the party. I heard how innovation is key to making products and making solutions to issues that arise.
This could and normally is the extent of it, but while there I met some patrons who thought my story was cool and were very friendly. They played a cameo in the video and the owner had a part that was absolutely incredible. The video, along with others is on the Instagram @liftnbrews but I’ll just say it shows a love of beer!
Getting ready to depart, one patron said I couldn’t leave yet because they were having a bottle share. A group of them get together and bring different beers to share with each other. This helps to try far more beers and to do so in a fun environment. Adding to it were some appetizers including an amazing crawfish dip! I explained I didn’t have anything to offer, and they didn’t care and happily allowed me to partake. It was a fun environment, connecting with nice people and enjoying more beer.
As it turns out, I made the right decision going to this brewery. The other one told me they couldn’t meet. I love it when things work out just right.
I went back to my friends and we did some moving of occasional large objects, and some relaxing and beer drinking. That night, they said they had to be a little tourist like and show me a drive through booze place. I guess the workout around is they don’t put the straw in the boozed slushy, but it was a good time. We then hit a hot dog place before heading back for more porch chilling.
The next morning, I told them I would be heading out and hitting some tourist spots. I had two friends donate money for me to get some food and I wasn’t about to miss out on good grub or let them down! More details on those adventures will be the in the next blog!