A perk of being a Ph.D. student is that you get an all-expense paid mini-vacation when you are giving a talk at a conference. This year I got to visit New Orleans, or "the Big Easy" as people called it for the easy-going, casual feelings of the city. It was exactly a decade ago that New Orleans was hit by Hurricane Katrina, leaving almost 80% of the city underwater. The city and her people have recovered so well that there are barely any trace of the destruction to be seen.

All photographs in this set are taken with the iPhone 6s and edited with the VSCO app. Enjoy! 

Reading Quiz: Can you figure out where the name of the post come from?

The city is also know as the " Birthplace of Jazz ". Here is a decoration in a Starbucks store.

The city is also know as the "Birthplace of Jazz". Here is a decoration in a Starbucks store.

There are street performers everywhere in the  French Quarter . Here is a band called " The Royal Street Windin Boys " performing on, you guessed it, Royal Steet. 

There are street performers everywhere in the French Quarter. Here is a band called "The Royal Street Windin Boys" performing on, you guessed it, Royal Steet. 

Horse head posts like this one lined the streets of the French Quarter. They were used to hold horses a long time back.

Horse head posts like this one lined the streets of the French Quarter. They were used to hold horses a long time back.

St. Louis Cathedral  is one of the oldest Catholic church in the country. Tourists can also jump on the horse carriage and sight-see around the area.

St. Louis Cathedral is one of the oldest Catholic church in the country. Tourists can also jump on the horse carriage and sight-see around the area.

Inside the cathedral

Inside the cathedral

A musician family performing in front of the cathedral. I bet the baby would grow up to become a musician too! 

A musician family performing in front of the cathedral. I bet the baby would grow up to become a musician too! 

A 140 year-old  Café du Monde  is famous for its beignet, a fried donut topped with powdered sugar.

A 140 year-old Café du Monde is famous for its beignet, a fried donut topped with powdered sugar.

The  Preservation Hall  was established in 1961 to "preserve, perpetuate, and protect traditional New Orleans Jazz". The house band performs three, ~40 minute-long shows every night. One of the songs that the band played that night was "Do You Know What It Means To Miss New Orleans" by Louis Armstrong.

The Preservation Hall was established in 1961 to "preserve, perpetuate, and protect traditional New Orleans Jazz". The house band performs three, ~40 minute-long shows every night. One of the songs that the band played that night was "Do You Know What It Means To Miss New Orleans" by Louis Armstrong.

We were there to witness a  Jazz Funeral  of the famous celebrity chef Paul Prudhomme. The purpose of the jazz funeral is to "celebrates life at the moment of death". The brass band plays solemn music on the way to the grave and happy music on the return with participants dancing behind the band.

We were there to witness a Jazz Funeral of the famous celebrity chef Paul Prudhomme. The purpose of the jazz funeral is to "celebrates life at the moment of death". The brass band plays solemn music on the way to the grave and happy music on the return with participants dancing behind the band.

The  National World War II Museum  is a must-see for those who are visiting NOLA. Located in the  Warehouse District , the museum was recently expanded to house real fighter planes, bombers, tanks, and many artifacts. 

The National World War II Museum is a must-see for those who are visiting NOLA. Located in the Warehouse District, the museum was recently expanded to house real fighter planes, bombers, tanks, and many artifacts. 

The  Commander's Palace  is a famous restaurant in the  Garden District  of Uptown New Orleans. Established in 1890, it is a proper sit down restaurant with a formal dress code. The food was amazing but the best part was the  Bread Pudding Soufflé with Whiskey Sauce.  There is also a Jazz Brunch on Sunday. Many famous chefs including the late Paul Prudhomme and Emeril "BAM!" Lagasse has worked here before.

The Commander's Palace is a famous restaurant in the Garden District of Uptown New Orleans. Established in 1890, it is a proper sit down restaurant with a formal dress code. The food was amazing but the best part was the Bread Pudding Soufflé with Whiskey Sauce. There is also a Jazz Brunch on Sunday. Many famous chefs including the late Paul Prudhomme and Emeril "BAM!" Lagasse has worked here before.

The  Mississippi River  runs around the city of New Orleans. Now I can say that I have seen both the source (Lake Itasca, Minnesota) and the mouth of the Mississippi. 

The Mississippi River runs around the city of New Orleans. Now I can say that I have seen both the source (Lake Itasca, Minnesota) and the mouth of the Mississippi. 

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