On the Saturday after the parade, Charlotte thought it would be nice to take out her husband, Tom's boat to lunch and tour Bayou Liberte. Had we taken the car, the round trip would have taken about ten minutes. On meandering flow of the bayou, it was two hours. Each way. We spent the entire day on the boat.
Well, all except the hard turns we made in Lake Ponchatrain. It reminds me too much of the car accident Charlotte and I had in 1995. Charlotte and I were headed to Mississippi to pick up my exhibit and put up one for her, when we hit a patch of black ice. Charlotte's driving kept us from careening down the steep embankment until the trailer we were pullling swayed to my side and swung to her side, swatting the van and sending us three times ass over appetite before landing on the passenger side in the median of the highway.
We were happy to make it home that day, unharmed. But that movement is etched in my eustatian tube's memory.
Homes edge the waterway. This is George Dunbar's studio. Dunbar is a Louisiana artist with an international reputation and family friend of Charlotte.
No one knows why the indians left them, but shell middens like this dot the bayou. Perhaps they dumped the seashells here out of ritual. Or maybe they attracted animals. Or perhaps they just were stinky. We'll never know. They do, however, form pockets of land that allow trees to take root. The trees provide homes for osprey and other wildlife like Nutria.
We wound around until we came upon one of the most famous inhabitants of the bayou.
Meet Melvin at his pad. I admired his decorating sense. Mel invited us for to stay for a beer, but Charlotte's son and father were waiting for us at the restaurant.
It was a beautiful lazy day.
On Bayou Liberte.
*All the gorgeous photography by the talented Hud Andrews*