Saturday, January 15, 2011

Revisiting America

Well, here I am again.
Regardless of where you are there are a certain amount of chores that have to be done, especially to keep walking space in your room and the small kitchen free of clutter and dirty dishes.  I'm coming up with some pretty good meals though, with only a two-burner stove and a toaster oven.  Like yesterday, for lunch we had fish fillets in lemon-butter sauce, pasta salad, and left-over asparagus-english pea casserole.  Always tea and a bite of peppermint bark for our sweet tooth.
We are looking for John Besh and thought he might be at his restaurant "La Provence" in Mandeville, anyway that was our excuse for going.  The restaurant was open, but just open, because meals were served at five in the afternoon.  Walked in and a lovely little lady told us this, and said we could look around if we wanted to.  We said goodbye, went to our car and were driving away when she came out to the car and invited us back in, because she said, " John would have wanted her to".  First of all, the building is so beautiful, furnished with "country french antiques",  little seating areas around this huge room, several other dining rooms as well, a huge banquet room, all the  tables with white cloths and silver,   huge big stone fireplaces with fires burning, fresh flowers, a piano.  I sat and played several songs, after she had just told me that the best piano player she had ever heard usually played there. (I'm not intimidated).  She did clap, not very loud or long.Ha!
She served us coffee made with a "french press"  pate, and tiny little slices of french bread.  Her name is Joyce Bates, and she writes poetry under the name of "Just Joyce"  She gave us several cards she had written.  We really hated to leave, but there were several men there working, and we doubted we could have afforded to eat a meal, regardless of the time it would be served.  Sure did want to though, so we may  try to visit his restaurant "August" in N.O. next week.  This restaurant was in Lacombe, rather than Mandeville, so we went back  to Mandeville, only several miles, to the "dive" "Louie and
the Redhead Lady, which will be featured on the Food channel January 24, and several other dates, which is hosted by Guy Fiere, "Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives".  Kevin Belton had given us the name of  the Chef-Owner Louie Finnan.   This was some of the best food we have eaten, fried shrimp and catfish, delicate onion rings, green beans,  a delicious green salad, but, before this, the most wonderful artichoke and shrimp soup (just a cup).  Louie the chef did come over and talk to us, and mentioned several times he would be with Guy Fiere in the next month.  That was an interesting experience and we have pictures to prove it.
Then, last night, we had been invited a week ago, we visited a cousin of a friend in one of the most beautiful, elegant homes I've ever been in.  I am not capable of describing the many different, unusal pieces of furniture, every wall hung with valuable art of every kind, statutes, dishes, elegant rugs, brick walls, eleven-foot ceilings, out-door patio areas, a pool, beautiful chandeliers.  Well, you get the idea.
After visiting awhile we walked around to a quaint pizza place where every  unusual kind of pizza was made, as well as many other different dishes, walked down several busy "night-life" streets, walked to our car, said our good-byes, and then, home. We do hope to re-visit them again before leaving N.O.
 My direction senses, even with ONSTAR leave a lot to be desired, so on any given trip, I will take a scenic tour or two, and of course, this happened on our way home.  I'm just hoping I'm not on ONSTAR'S "most wanted list of the worst driver not to help" or these next eleven months will be a trial.  I do plan to listen more carefully, and follow the directions.
We do have something special planned for Sunday, the 16th.  Until my next blog, thanks for listening.
Lou, who is so appreciative of the opportunity to do what I'm doing, and know it is because of the wonderful blessings, care, grace of my Lord and Savior, who wants to bless us with every good and perfect gift and blessing.


  1. Wow! I love Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives-watch it all the time! I know y'all are enjoying every minute, such interesting places and people. Your blog is wonderful- I hear your voices as I read it and makes me feel like I'm there with you!
    Can't wait to hear about Sunday! and Monday, and Tuesday, and Feb, and March....
    Love y'all! Have fun! We're all doing fine here! (though I might have to go by and open your front door a day or so a week...too lonesome looking with the door closed ALL the time!)

  2. Aunt Kay, I agree that we may have to open Grandmother's door. Went by there yesterday and it did seem a bit lonely.

    Grandmother, I absolutely love reading your blog and like Kay I imagine your voices as im reading! Love you and Aunt Janie both and pray for you daily. Keep up the Great blogging!

  3. At risk of sounding like a broken record, I agree with KK and Syd. The blogs are something I really look forward to and Chatom just isn't the same without you. But on the same note, nowhere you will be visiting will be the same once you leave. Each town will miss you in its own way. You and Aunt Janie will leave your mark as you make your way across the country. By reading your blog I feel like not only am I learning how you are spending your days, I feel like I am learning more about the two of you. It's interesting how you communicate your experiences through words. You make even the simplest things sound so interesting. This is still so surreal that yall are actually doing this. I miss you and I can't wait for the next entry. Love you, Meagan

  4. It is so neat to think of all the people that will feel like we do about "Mrs. Lou" during these great trip....Chatom Al will be remembered as a place where true Southern Ladies come it...

  5. Hi Lou, Ted and I got to Pagosa Springs. Marie read your blogs and was amazed with your plans. She sends thanks for music.
    WAG EAGLE - what a gam.
    Have fun - sounds wonderful.

  6. Wow!! I didn't have the computer on for 2 days & look what I've missed!!! So glad you're out and about and having so much fun. New Orleans is all about the food!
    You didn't mention whether you had an adventure crossing the causeway on the way over. When Brian & I drove down from Memphis for a Tulane graduation (not long before moving to CA - Brian was 11), crossing the causeway was his big thing to do. He had heard that from the middle of it, you couldn't see either shore. Since there was no other traffic, we stopped a little while. Then, without much more than a dark cloud over Mandeville, it started to pour down rain. I could hardly see to drive & there we were, alone on the causeway.
    I'll set the TiVo for the Diners show so I can enjoy again what you're doing. Too bad there isn't "taste-o-vision."
    Love you & am so proud of you two!!
    jo anne, whom the Lord allowed to be part of a fantastic, gutsy, & family!!!