Did you get swept up in the whirlwind that was the 2006 release of the book Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert? Or maybe it didn’t hit you until later, in 2010, when America’s sweetheart Julia Roberts starred in the film version of the classic tale. Either way, at some point, you were probably thinking to yourself, “Okay, but how can I go on this spiritual and food-based journey without buying three different international plane tickets? How can I translate this to my own life in the Gulf South?”
Well, worry no more. Here is a detailed list of how you can eat, pray, love—and experience all the emotional growth of this brave woman’s journey—without leaving the comfort of Louisiana! Here is how to Eat, Pray, Love New Orleans:
1. Get Divorced
I’d recommend the courthouse on Broad Street (if it’s uncontested!); it’s very grand, and you can see a movie afterwards. Or, go to Whole Foods down the street. The prison is also right there, so you can be grateful that you both got out before one of you made a huge mistake.
2. Drown Yourself in Pasta
This one’s shockingly hard because there seems to be more bad pasta than good out there, but Pizza Delicious will always be there for us, as well as Reginelli’s. Don’t forget them. Also, if you just want to do the spirit of the thing, the pizza at Ancora is something that could inspire a third of a novel.
3. Meditate While Eating Indian Food
Go to the Hare Krishna temple on Esplanade Avenue on a Sunday at 7:30 p.m., and you can do all of this and more (“more” being share a bench with an Indian child drinking a Capri Sun). You’re gonna be waiting in line for quite some time (get there early!), so you should use this time to practice a mantra, clear your mind, and approach enlightenment. Make sure you can leave enlightenment when it’s your turn for free samosas, though; it’s rude to hold up the line.
4. Search For “Balance”
Well, you can always just try to walk on a pole somewhere, or you could take a yoga class. Or, honestly, any workout class. Pure Barre seems good if you need a little Top 40 while you try to achieve balance and if you think there’s a Lululemon in heaven. Also, there’s free yoga (if that’s more your speed) when it’s nice out—by the river on Thursdays at 6:00 p.m. in Crescent Park. It’s crowded, though, so make sure you’re really into balancing your personal space as well.
5. Ask Yourself a Lot of Existential Questions About Your Path in Life
You don’t need to be anywhere specific to do this, but when considering your life’s direction, it’s always good to be by some train tracks. The ones by the end of Saint Claude Avenue are always good; they have plenty of gravel to kick as you walk aimlessly, and there’s a dog park if your mulling takes a dark turn and you need to be reminded of unconditional love and paws.
6. Fall in Love with a Brazilian Man
I mean, this could happen anywhere, but I feel like it’s most likely to happen in the Rouses on Carrollton Avenue.
7. End Your Celibacy
8. Write the Word “Love” in Rose Petals and Photograph it and Make it a Cover of a Book
The Home Depot on the I-10 Service Road has a good garden section and natural light.
Congratulations, you did it! You’re now the best version of yourself. Feel free to write your own book.