Wednesday, 9 July 2014

ROAD TRIP// Oak Alley Plantation

I think we all know at least one movie about slavery, either a very fictional one like Django Unchained or the more close to reality one such as 12 Years a Slave. Since these stories are all set in the South of the US, I immediately put them on our must-see list. As the Missisipi river makes its way down to the Gulf of Mexico, there are loads of plantations on each side of it. Some of the buildings are not there anymore, some are private property and some have been open to the public. Like this one: Oak Alley Plantation.
Like the name says, the main house is surrounded by amazing oak trees and the front of it has a whole alley of them . It is just as beautiful as in the pictures and even more sun when the sun comes through the branches. Magical, let me tell ya.

Most of the plantations offer self guided tours for a lot cheaper than the guided ones, but for this one we thought we definitely needed the guide to tell us about the plantation. We paid around 20$ each I think and included was the self guided tour across the property and the guided tour of the house. The tour was led by a woman in a sort of time appropriate dress, waving her hands around when she speaks about the former owners of the house. To be honest, it was not what we expected. We thought that the tour would fill us in about daily life at the plantation, all sorts of details about the people who lived and worked there, the whole slavery issue and so on. Instead, we now know all sorts of boring facts about the two families that lived on the plantation in the past. What we really wanted to know was not at all talked about except one or two lame sentences: "So all of this was made possible by the slaves that worked so hard..." or "and the 150 slaves that lived in the huts over there..."- it was ridiculous. They made it sound like the slaves were super excited to be working until they drop dead. So that tour was really not what we expected, sadly- the former slave huts were not either. They were almost brand new and only filled with a little of information and one brochure. Disappointing for sure. 
Before coming here I did read some review saying that all the plantations do is make money off a horrible past. And even though I thought it was going to be different and educating, it wasn't really. It was beautiful and fascinating and an experience, but you feel a bit ripped of in my opinion. 

Anyway, as much as we felt a bit torn during our visit, I also thought it was super exciting just to the see this super old beautiful oak alley and the view from the house.

Denise chasing a squirrel

Couldn't resist

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