This time last year + work trip in New Orleans

new orleans | warehouse district

I had a timehop memory pop up across my phone this morning, so I thought I would share what I was up to this time last year! And today, I’m working on a unique work project doing something extra special for the holiday season.

This exact time last year was super hectic and super fun. I went to a conference for work that just happened to be in New Orleans: one of my favorite cities. I went with two of my colleagues, and we had the best time.

work trip

Packing for work trips is hard! I try to pack by “outfit” that I’m planning to wear each day. It’s harder when it’s business casual. This was kind of a last- minute pack job if I’m being honest 🙂

new orleans | warehouse district

I flew in to New Orleans on a Tuesday afternoon, and I got to see their renovated airport for the first time. I took an Uber to the hotel, which was the same hotel where the conference was being held. It was a cute little hotel in the Warehouse District. I had some time before my two co-workers arrived, so I walked over to a Starbucks and perused some shops.

Then, I headed back to the hotel to check in for the conference. We decided to do dinner at Brennan’s because one of my co-workers had never been to New Orleans. It was also the one free night where we weren’t going to occupied by the conference. I decided on the shrimp! We called it an early night to be ready for the conference the following day.

The conference

The first full day of the conference was an early start, so I just grabbed the breakfast food (and coffee) they set out for the participants. Then, I grabbed my spot at one of the tables and set up shop with my laptop to take notes. Lunch was on our own, so my work friends and I walked over to “Emeril’s” for lunch because it was right down the street. I had never been during any of my trips to NOLA, and it was a treat! I had the barbecue roasted salmon. The conference went until about 6 p.m. that evening, and we stayed behind a bit at the evening mixer to talk to some colleagues also in the health care industry until about 7.

New Orleans | Warehouse district
The set-up for the mixer

At that point, it was time to refuel. My friend wanted to get a Pimm’s Cup from Napolean House, which has been open since 1914. So, we had a drink while we waited for our reservations down the street at K- Paul’s. Now, this restaurant is one I try to go to every time I’m in NOLA because it is that good. I’m sad to see that it looks like it’s permanently closed due to the pandemic. Then, it was back to the hotel!

Conference Day 2

I woke up the second full day of the conference early to get a quick workout in. I ran on the treadmill in the hotel gym, went back to my room to get ready for Day 2 of the conference. On this day, we broke out into smaller group sessions with people in our industry to get some more in depth learning and discussion going. We worked through lunch and met my co-worker’s sister for dinner. We had been trying all day to get a reservation at Cochon, and we were finally able to snag one as soon as the conference got out for the evening. Ya’ll. This meal was worth all the hype. It was delicious. We split a bunch of appetizers including the fried alligator and oysters, and I had their fish option for my entrée.

When we got back to the hotel that night from dinner, I packed up all my stuff so it would be ready to go by mid-day the following day. I knew I was able to attend the morning sessions on the last day of the conference, but I needed to be back in Houston for one of my best friend’s wedding weekends. I had a rehearsal dinner I needed to get to that evening!

This time last year there was no way anyone would have predicted what was to come. I took conferences for granted – hanging with my co-workers for granted – and even weddings for granted. I loved that I had the chance to spend some time in one of my favorite cities before the whole world shut down. I’m so glad I went, and I can’t wait until the day when we can travel (for work or for pleasure) again!

Happy Thursday, friends!


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