What is Mardi Gras?
Mardi Gras is the common name for a period of celebration between Twelth Night to Ash Wednesday. The last day of celebration is the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday – Mardi Gras, or Fat Tuesday. While Mardi Gras and Carnival are celebrated in cities around the country, the largest and best-known Mardi Gras celebration takes place every year in New Orleans, Louisiana. In 2016, over a million people visited New Orleans for Mardi Gras.
What’s it like navigating crowds and parades during Mardi Gras? We asked Asia, a Zeel Massage Therapist, for her thoughts on working in New Orleans during the biggest party season in the city.
Travel is tough during Mardi Gras. Plan accordingly
Driving is very problematic during Mardi Gras, as travelers head to New Orleans to “let the good times roll” during this historic festival.
“Mardi Gras means streets are barricaded off, “says Asia. “I’ve been stuck on Carondelet (a major street in New Orleans) for an hour and a half waiting for the cops to let me through. The trip should have taken 5 minutes. “
Parking can also be pricey during Mardi Gras too. “Lots that are normally $5 go up to $30 or more,” advises Asia.
How long does Mardi Gras last?
Mardi Gras time in New Orleans involves weeks of celebration and festivity – at all hours.
“The weekends can be tough for travel,” adds Asia – not only do Mardi Gras parades and parties multiply during the two weekends prior to Fat Tuesday, but they occur both during the day and the evening. “Things do get better after midnight for travel.”
A Mardi Gras massage in New Orleans
Should you book a massage in New Orleans during the weeks of Mardi Gras celebration? If you do, advises Asia , be patient. Parades cause frequent street closures, and travel for Zeel Massage Therapists can be difficult.
And if you do book a Zeel Massage, lay off the Hurricanes beforehand. It’s not a good idea to drink during a massage, says Asia. “Alcohol can numb the body, so not only do you not get the full effects of the massage, but you can’t tell what pressure is best for your body.”
Marcy is the SVP of People and Communications at Zeel. In addition to overseeing the humans of Zeel, Marcy has written about workplace topics for more than 20 years both at Zeel and as VP of Content for Vault.com, a career information web site and publisher.