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Kalissa Wayne: Living in Cajun Country
Sunday, April 16th, 2017

Good morning everyone! It’s a beautiful Sunday morning. To those who observe it, Happy Easter! To those who don’t, Happy Beautiful Sunday! Okay, now, on to a topic a little less…. Eastery!

My husband and I live in southern Louisiana, and I do mean southern. As in, Cajun Country. For those who don’t know, Cajun Country is anywhere south of Interstate 10 in southwest Louisiana and while it’s not all moss-covered-tree swamps, the majority of it is water-based. People down here move to their own beat, it’s called Zydeco – which is a blend of blues, R&B and the music indigenous to the Louisiana Creole and Native peoples of Louisiana. Zydeco blends guitar, accordion and washboard (yes, old-fashioned laundry scrub boards) and for those not used to the sound, may be an acquired taste. I love it!

There are always fun things to do around here, when the evil-day-job allows for such things. Our favorite thing has to be going to the Cameron Parish National Wildlife Refuge and driving their Pintail Wildlife Drive. Pintail is a 3 mile gravel drive though a wet-plains type of environment. They have a boardwalk you can enjoy. In the winter months, the area becomes host to millions (literally!) of birds. I now know to where all the birds fly south! It seemed that way this winter at least, because you saw more birds than water! We see all types of wildlife, from the birds, hatchlings, nutria rat, to the big ones – alligators! We think we even saw a bald eagle one day, but couldn’t get a close enough photo to decide either way.

We count gators as we do a slow cruise, and the highest we’ve counted is 105 in just that 3 mile loop. And no, we don’t get out of the vehicle! First, because it’s posted that you can only exit your vehicle at the boardwalk. Two, we aren’t idiots! Gators can move fast when they want to, and I’ve seen videos where they can rip the bumper off a truck, I’m not tempting them with my freakin’ legs! While I admire that gators are basically living dinosaurs, I give them much respect and a wide berth! (That photo? That’s taken from our truck which is about 20 feet or so away from them. Yeah, big boys!)

I have to state, here and now, a few facts about me… I was born and raised in the mid-west so I’m not a Cajun, not anywhere near a native, and my husband was raised in northern Louisiana so he can’t claim to be Cajun either. And I’m no expert on the subject, so come on down sometime and explore for yourselves! We’d love for you to visit!