This is the home of Joyce Montana, widow of Tootie Montana, on Villere Street in the Seventh Ward.
On Mardi Gras, we spent a couple of hours lurking in the street outside the house and watching all the Mardi Gras Indians come by to pay their respects to Miss Joyce, and to greet Darryl, now the big chief of the Yellow Pocahontas. (Lisa Katzman's film Tootie's Last Suit is screening this week at the Pan African Film and Arts Festival in Los Angeles.) The first Indian pictured here is Miss Joyce's great-granddaughter. The little ones in pink were with the Fi Ya Ya.
By the time Darryl was in partial costume, it was mid-afternoon and the street was crowded, thronged with neighbors, costumed revelers, film crews, photographers ...
The delay was caused by the costume: it wasn't finished, and inside Darryl, his wife, Sabrina, and legions of helpers were still gluing feathers and working on the cuffs. The humid, windy weather wasn't helping. But finally the crown was carried down the stairs.
That last picture is Darryl with Miss Joyce and Sabrina. The circle motifs on his suit were a tribute to the work of late artist John Scott, who was from New Orleans. This article in USA Today shows Darryl at work on his suit. (Note that story says he planned to come out at 10 AM on Mardi Gras morning.)
Seeing the Indians and their towering, vibrant, hand-beaded suits up close was beyond amazing. Sorry to give such a banal summary of such a spectacular sight.