If you have not had the plea­sure of dri­ving across I-10, or just flee­ing Florida, let me break the news to you that it takes an eter­nity to get out of Florida. Fri­day morn­ing (still in Florida), we ate some seri­ously amaz­ing quiche at Craig’s Killer Cof­fee, a semi-random cof­fee shop inside a video store. Should you find your­self in Tal­la­has­see, I rec­om­mend it.

We made it to Pen­sacola (still Florida) in the after­noon and stopped at Cap­tain Joey Patti’s. (Link goes to the fish mar­ket owned by the same fam­ily. The free­stand­ing restau­rant is about a block away.) I feel fairly con­fi­dent that I’m eat­ing fresh seafood when you can see fish being hauled off of boats nearby. To truly have our South­ern seafood expe­ri­ence, we ate hush pup­pies, fried fish, and a mas­sive slice of red vel­vet cake. To drink? Sweet tea, of course.

Finally, New Orleans (not Florida!)—I had emailed Val­o­rie to ask for a dog-friendly din­ner rec­om­men­da­tion, and she ever so gen­er­ously offered us her guest room. What a treat! She and Alberto are, unsur­pris­ingly, fan­tas­tic hosts. If I had had my act together, I would show you some of the beau­ti­ful details of her home, her adorable pooch Cholo, and the two of us together—Valorie look­ing very chic and me look­ing, well, not chic.

We took a long walk around their neigh­bor­hood to stretch our legs and, I know every­one says this when they visit New Orleans, but could the peo­ple be any nicer? I think every per­son we passed on the street said hello, talked to Harry, or, at the very least, smiled. Now that liv­ing in the trop­ics no longer fazes me, I think we could adapt to New Orleans’ humid­ity with­out issue.

Din­ner Fri­day was at the very lovely Coquette, where Ryan sam­pled a decent por­tion of the cock­tail menu, and I ate noth­ing bad. Pork belly ravi­oli, yel­low­tail crudo, beignets with a choco­late pot de crème. My mouth waters, and it’s three days later.