We loaded the red suburban on New Years Day with several faithful Utah fans, filled the 44 gallon tank, and headed off for New Orleans. A few of our good friends agreed to keep our girls for the days we were gone. The first day we drove to Birmingham and stayed in a hotel there. We enjoyed Rootbeer floats while we watched the last half of the Orange Bowl and saw Cincinnati sputter their chances of a BCS game win away. The next morning we had breakfast at the hotel and experienced some true southern hospitality as one of the hotel workers brought us out her homemade lemon pound cake to top off our dining experience. Bryce had already gone back to the room to get the leftover ice cream.
We then left Birmingham for the second leg of the trip to New Orleans. An hour outside of Birmingham we felt compelled to stop in Tuscaloosa to visit the campus of the famed University of Alabama. We stood in awe in front of Bryant Denny Stadium where there were monuments to all of the past Alabama coaches who had led their teams to national championships. There was even a spot for the next coach to accomplish this feat.
We arrived in New Orleans mid-afternoon on game day. We walked about two blocks down Bourbon Street before running away from that madness. We then found Cafe Du Monde and had ourselves some beignets and a great little restaurant where we could eat catfish sandwiches and cajun jambalya. Eventually we made our way to the Louisiana Superdome where we watched our University of Utah Runnin' Utes completely dismantle the Crimson Tide. It was beautiful.
The drive back was filled with hours and hours of reading news stories and reader comments about the game, the unfairness of the BCS system and the call for the Utes to share at least part of the national championship this year.