Heading East after the little Rally in Boerne, we were on the way to the little Louisiana town of Abbeville, and Betty's RV Park .
Betty’s place is more like a Bed and Breakfast than a campgound…with just 16 or so sites, and with her back porch and patio as the daily gathering area, you quickly get caught up in Betty’s web of all things welcoming, friendly and Cajun, here in Vermillion Parish, the heart of Cajun country.
Betty shows her painting on local Cypress wood
We met Tommie Sue and Harrell and Dennis and Carol here to spend a week enjoying the culture, music and food of the Cajuns and Acadians. We had our first history lesson of the Acadians when we visited Nova Scotia a few years back and learned more about the exile of the French Acadians from their homeland with many resettling to the Southern region of Louisiana. Here they made new homes, preserving their delightful heritage and spicy culture and music, while embracing the local bounties, including crawfish and seafood.
We had lunch at Suire’s Grocery….. an unassuming country market with the menu painted on the outside clapboards……
……which has gotten rave reviews by the New York Times for it’s amazing Cajun country cooking. Shrimp, crawfish, catfish and alligator po’ boys are their specialty so we all had some and it was slap-yo-momma good!!!! With just a hint of the Cajun spices in the lightly fried batter…..Mmmmmm good eating!!!
Tuesday we headed out to tour the Tobasco factory on nearby Avery Island. The McIlhenny’s have been growing peppers and making their famous hot sauce here since 1868.
And had more Cajun seafood at the Bon Creole Lunch Counter….. and just a little clowning around to go with lunch!!
Then we headed to the town of Jeanerette, on the Bayou Teche, and a stop at Lejeune's Bakery, where they’ve been baking fresh French Bread since 1884.
The brick oven you see in the center photo is the oldest brick oven, still in use, in the Country. The aroma of freshly baked bread and gingerbread is delightful….so we all left with fresh warm loaves under our arms!
Next we toured the Jeanerette Museum, where we learned much about the long history of this tiny town, known as Sugar City, because of it’s long association with the growth and processing of sugar cane.
…we dubbed this The Sugar Shack…but it is really the Paymaster’s shed from the Foundry. (Another cypress structure)
Below, a bit of Southern lore……..
…and elaborate Mardi Gras costumes from year’s past….
…hmm…..wonder where Tommie Sue got those beads??????
Stay tuned for the next stop at Albania Plantation , where our amazing tour guide, Tommie Sue, raises the bar to a new level!!!
Laissez les bon temps rouler!!!