Louisiana

A Day in the Life in Cajun Country

I am in rural Louisiana this week to get some inspiration for the finishing touches on my novel. I have gotten some inspiration alright, but not the kind I was expecting. Truth is truly stranger than fiction, but if I tell you why, somebody might have to kill me. Joking. But it occurs to me.

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Louisiana Noire: A Historic Lawsuit in New Iberia

Mural painted by school students in New Iberia, Louisiana.

Last Friday, in a small town in rural Louisiana, the state’s 16th Judicial District Court rescheduled a preliminary hearing to address procedural matters in a lawsuit described in nine double-spaced pages.

Ho hum, not usually the beginning of a great story, right?

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Da Berry’s Invisible 40%

Sometimes in my travels, I learn a little more about a place than meets the eye. The small town of New Iberia is one of those places.  It is one of Louisiana’s oldest and most historic.  Straddling both sides of the beloved Bayou Teche, it is the center of the state’s sugar cane production.  Locals are friendly and affectionately call their town “Da Berry.”  Visitors come to tour the elegant plantation house called  Shadows on the Teche, New Iberia’s charming downtown, and the jungle garden on Avery Island.

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The Angels in the Details

Sculpture in Georgetown, Penang, Malaysia

I love taking photographs when I travel, but I am selective about it because cameras can make you an outsider, an observer instead of a participant. One thing I like about having a camera is that, even if I don’t use it, I pay a little more attention to the details.

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Voodoo Child

Voodoo paraphernalia

Meet Robi.  He looks like a normal 25-year-old with a creative presentation and a healthy dose of self-confidence. Long dreds, faded jeans, a self-deprecating sense of humor with a second sense about how to tell a good story. It would probably take you a long time to guess that Robi is a Haitian High Priest in the voodoo tradition.   Continue reading

In Search of a Zydeco Trail Ride

My church in St. Martinville

For a really really long time, I have wanted to go on a Zydeco trail ride. Zydeco trail rides have been around for a long time, traditionally as informal cross country rides with neighbors.  Today, hundreds of Creole cowboys may join a ride, which usually ends at a big barbecue picnic with friends and family and Zydeco music. Continue reading

The Indians, Social Clubs and Second Lines of New Orleans

New Orleans always blows my mind. During a short stay in New Orleans this week, I visited one of my favorite mind-blowers, the Blandin Backstreet Museum.  The Museum tells fascinating stories of Louisiana history that might have been lost forever if it weren’t for one dedicated person:  Sylvester Francis.   Continue reading