10.15.2012

Down in the Bayou, Louisiana

Day 7 & 8: 
We left New Orleans headed west for Austin, Texas. We had such a great time exploring the city that we left a little later than expected. So were on the road and we pull over to switch drivers. This road (I-10 West) was a tall bridge that stretched miles and miles, winding it's way through the cypress swamp of the Bayou. Randomly along our drive, we could see modest homes back in the bayou that you could only get to by boat. As we pull over, we see a hand painted sign that read "Backwater Bar, 2 miles". On our way to this pit stop, since there was nothing else on this exit, we realize it's 2 country miles, further than we thought. I actually had to use the location finder feature on facebook using my phone to figure out where we actually were. We were in Butte Larose. 

The kind of place you only discover on a road trip. 
It was late in the day and I ordered a coke. Backwater was filled with people of all ages and dogs. There were wood burning pieces on the wall that were handmade by locals.A sign over the cash register read: "We don't dial 911" with an engraving of a shot gun below it. Later I found out they were made by the couple sitting next to me, who we winded up buying a wooden piece from. The woman told us that there was corn soup coming off the fire out back. We saw it come in through the back door, hot and steamy in a huge cast iron pot. We asked how much the soup was, and the woman looked at us funny and said, "It's free". There was some ruckus when people started asking what was in the corn soup. The woman who made it replied, "corn, what do you think is in it". There was extensive conversation about how the price of chicken necks had gone up or she would have put chicken necks in the soup for everyone.

Everyone had a story to tell. One guy told a story that he found stuff that people dropped off the bridge by mistake while traveling through the area all the time- lawn chairs, tools, even found a bag of onions one day.  He called them "road kill onions" He said he wish he had a bag of road kill onions to put in the soup. The guy next to him laughed and said that the best thing to put in a soup with road kill onions was road kill soup. Conversation ensued from there on different types of tasty road kill. 

 We checked the time and decided it would be a good idea to camp there since there was no camping anywhere else nearby. We set up or tent at a place called Frenchman's Wilderness in Atchafalaya National Forest. 

At 3:30am I wake up to see the light of my husband's smart phone lighting up the tent. He showed me the radar and the huge line of storms coming our way. The wind had already started to pick up and there was thunder in the distance. We discussed pulling everything out of our car and putting it in the tent so we could sleep in the car and decided that was a bad idea. The mosquitoes were so bad. By the looks of the campground any amount of rain would mean flooding in our tent. We decided our best bet was to pack up our tent and hit the road. It was a hard decision but we packed, showered, and hit the road by 4am. With mosquitoes still swarming in our car, and rain pouring down, we headed toward Austin.