Friday, April 10, 2009

Today was a hot, sunny, humid day but it was a real fun day. This morning we said goodbye to Birdie & Jean and wished them safe travels, Jean’s son is coming home from Iraq so she was excited to get home to greet him back.

Yesterday Martin, one of the fellows visiting the park, had come into happy hour quite late and said he had just won $38,000 at the casino – wow & double wow!!! We were chatting to Rick & Brenda after Birdie & Jean left when Martin came over, he had just returned from picking up his $38,000 at the casino – in cash mind you!!! None of us had ever seen that much money in cash and just as he was showing us Ginny & Gil came out of their trailer so of course we had to call them over to check it out, they were as impressed as we were!

Martin with his Money

Ginny Feeling the Goods

Yesterday at happy hour Rick & Brenda said they wanted to go to Suire’s for lunch today as they are leaving tomorrow. This is a typical Cajun restaurant, but is located out in the middle of nowhere and has been written up in the New York Times for its good food, so today 13 of us headed to Suire’s for lunch, Gil & Ginny rode with us and we thought we would do a bit of a tour around after lunch.

Betty at Lunch

Ginny, John & I had the plate lunch which was a shrimp stew with whole hardboiled eggs in it (and very spicy) served over rice, fried catfish, potato salad, a roll & a piece of cake for desert and Gil had the seafood platter which had all kinds of seafood on it - very good and the price was right as John and I’s lunch, including a drink, was $17.

After lunch Bill & Shirley heard us mentioning doing a bit of a tour around so asked if they could follow us – sure, no problem, so the rest of the group headed back to the park. Before leaving the restaurant Ginny & I were outside taking pictures

Ginny, John, Shirley, Bill & Gil

and I was standing in an empty parking space when all of a sudden I realized there was a truck waiting to pull in – guess he didn’t want me for a hood ornament – LOL! I apologized to him then moved on to take a couple more pictures but Ginny, bless her, started talking to him (turns out his name was Ray). He told Ginny that he had the property on the opposite corner and today was their big crawfish boil and asked us to come over and join them, Ginny said we had just eaten but he insisted we come anyways, he was just picking up some bags of ice and to follow him back. As an explanation apparently Good Friday is the time for all these huge crawfish boils and on the news last night they said there would be over 3 MILLION POUNDS of crawfish consumed today – unbelievable!

So, off we went following Ray and they had all kinds of parking in the farm yard and after parking he took us over to where they were doing the boil and eating the crawfish. What an exciting time and wonderful experience we had and everyone was so friendly and talkative.

Ginny & I stopped to take a picture of this fellow sitting & enjoying his crawfish & he insisted on showing us how to break them open, take out the vein then gave us each a couple to try - how wonderful!

Some of the little guys managed to get out of the bag so John picked this fellow up so we could take a picture.

Washing the Live Crawfish

Stirring the Boiling Pot (They cook them for 15 Minutes)

These are Cleaned & Waiting for the Boiling Pot

Dumping Another Pot of Cooked Crawfish into the Tub and Seasoning Them

Ray had mentioned that they charged $10 per person but wouldn’t take any money from us, and then he insisted on us taking some crawfish to try, right just a couple as you can see from John & Gil holding them.

Ray with John & Gil & Their Small Taste of Crawfish (They Did Share with Ginny & I!)

They were saying the crawfish are smaller than usual this year because of lack of rain over the winter and we noticed that they were much smaller than the ones we have had here the last couple of years, but they were still as good!!

We sat at a table with a woman (whose husband brought us another huge tray of crawfish) and when we said we were staying at Betty’s she said Betty was her cousin – so we made sure we got her name to tell Betty we had met her. They had a huge covered area set up with a band and they were just starting to play when we left, Ray wanted us to stay for the music but we are going to a jam session tomorrow so figured we should still do some touring around.

When we were leaving John & Gil insisted on giving Ray’s wife, Sis, some money for all the crawfish they had given us. Ray also insisted that we stop and check out the deserts – they had peanut butter/chocolate cookies to die for!

From there we drove down to Pecan Island then checked out a couple of side roads on the way back – pretty country. At one point there was a big turtle on the road and Bill & Shirley were ahead of us so Bill stopped and Shirley grabbed the turtle to get him off the road and the ungrateful turtle peed all over her – she said never again would she do a good deed for a turtle!! We saw a couple of large snakes dead on the road – one was definitely a poisonous one from the shape of his head but the other one was headless so we don’t know what it was. Bill & Shirley decided to check out another side road and they saw a huge alligator but it disappeared into the roadside grass and they couldn’t find it. We all decided that there is no way we would want to go out and wander on foot around some of this countryside!!!

A House on Stilts & So Is the Garage (We Only Saw One Like This!!!)

We saw this house on a bayou and thought the hollow tree was interesting

and we also saw these fascinating oil rigs of some sort.

And There are Some Real Pretty Houses

A Crawfish Pond

When we got back we went over to happy hour so I asked Betty is she knew Venola Broussard, Betty asked how on earth I had met her so we told them how we had got invited to the crawfish boil, boy were they jealous as they had all commented on how they wished they could go to it when they left the restaurant.

The bonus today was that we didn’t see the rain that they had called for and it was a beautiful day weather wise, can we be so lucky that this weather will continue?

Needless to say there is no dinner at the Hacking house tonight as we are still stuffed from lunch and crawfish.

As always, today was another great gift of a day in the sunny, but windy, south and we look forward to another good day tomorrow.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Today was overcast with sunny breaks, a good day for our long drive from Red Shoes RV park to Betty’s – a total of 135km (84 miles)!

This is a pretty cemetery we passed today

We arrived at Betty’s about 1 p.m. to huge welcoming hugs from Betty – a really lovely lady. We got set up and while John was getting organized Betty and I sat and had a long chat, she is also a breast cancer survivor so we had lots to talk about.

Betty was just busting to tell us when we got here that there were people here we knew and who we had recommended her park to, it turns out it was Birdie & Jean, a couple from Illinois who we know from Del Pueblo park in Yuma, and who usually stay at Poche’s campground in Breaux Bridge. Needless to say we were surprised to see them, apparently they made the decision to come here after they left Yuma. They are with a couple from Brighton, ON who have an Airstream so we were pleased to meet Peter & Linda.

After getting organized Gil & Ginny and John & I headed to Wal Mart for some groceries, we both took our own trucks as we are both short of room for extra passengers as well as bags of groceries.

When we got back we headed over for happy hour which was in full swing and as Betty said it was Canada happy hour as there were 5 couples there from Canada. One of the other couples, Brenda & Rick, we had met last year – they are from Elmira and summer in Port Elgin which is about 30 km north of where we are at Kincardine. Another couple were from Sudbury and own a campground there, so we all had a great chat as well as with the other guests. It is a really small world as when Ginny met Brenda and they got talking it turns out Ginny’s sister is in the same park in Port Elgin as Rick & Brenda.

We were glad to see Birdie & Jean as they are leaving in the morning to head home and their friends, Peter & Linda, are also heading out in the morning. Brenda & Rick are leaving on Saturday and heading to Gulf Shores for a bit so we might run into them there next week.

Tonight has been a quiet evening and it is now time for bed, John is sitting here studying the inside of his eyelids so I think he is ready to call it a day. We have plans for tomorrow so please come back to hear how our day went.

As always, today was another great gift of a day in the sunny, but windy, south and we look forward to another good day tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

I sure don’t know where the time has gone but I suddenly realized I haven’t updated my blog for a couple of days so thought I had best get at it. The weather has been nice, Tuesday was sunny but the wind was cool but today was a nice warm sunny day with a high of about 78F.

Yesterday we had a great drive

This Was Typical Scenery

and we are now at Red Shoes RV Park which is part of the Coushatta Casino complex. The park IS NOT well marked, we drove through the casino area first, got turned around and out, and drove down the road a bit and there was a little sign saying RV park – we almost missed it (and we didn’t feel bad as both Bob & Brenda & Ginny & Gil did the same thing!). Anyways, the park is really nice with big long sites and as we pulled in to our spot Brenda & Bob we out waiting to meet us and say hello.

We got unhooked and set up then went over to sit on their patio to get acquainted, they are a very nice couple from Chatham, Bob is retired and Brenda still works part time but takes 6 weeks holidays in the winter and they come to Apache Junction Arizona. They met Ginny & Gil in Oklahoma last winter on their way home and when they heard Ginny & Gil were coming here decided to meet up with them again for a couple of days as they are on their way home again – neat.

Ginny & Gil arrived around 5 and we were all sitting out waiting to greet them so after they got set up they came over for a late happy hour. I think it was about 7:30 before we had dinner and with all the visiting it was 11:30 before everyone headed home – guess we were all having a good time!

Brenda & Ginny

This morning I headed up to the laundromat to do some laundry and when I got back everyone was at our place visiting with John and waiting for me as they were going to walk up to the casino. John was busy doing some stuff and passed but I quickly hung up a few clothes, got some money and headed out with them for the casino. The casino was very disappointing as they didn’t have any incentives re meals etc. – the buffet dinner was $25 and we weren’t about to pop for that so we played the machines for a bit then headed back.

Bob & Brenda had come back ahead of us so on the way back Ginny & I decided we would do pork tenderloin etc. for dinner but when we invited Brenda & Bob they wanted to go out for dinner instead.

We went over to Brenda & Bob’s for happy hour then they headed into town for dinner and Gil started the pork tenderloin and we had a delicious dinner at Gil & Ginny’s. Brenda & Bob came in when they got back and it was another evening of lots of chatting and again about 11:30 when we got home –too late to worry about doing the blog.

Tonight's Moon - Notice the Haze Around It

Bob, Brenda & John


As always, the last two days have been great gifts here in the sunny south and we look forward to another good day tomorrow.

Monday, April 6, 2009

I didn’t do a posting yesterday as there wasn’t much to say. We had a very quiet day, John worked on our tax returns and I fiddle/faddled around a bit, talked to our daughter Nan, then sat outside in the afternoon reading and enjoying the nice weather.

About 6 p.m. the predicted “Canadian Cold Front” came through and the temperature dropped really fast, John had to put on long pants and a jacket to barbecue – tough eh!

Today has been sunny but much cooler and windy again, I am sure tired of all this wind – hopefully we will lose it in Louisiana.

John again spent a better part of the day working on the taxes (they are now e-filed) and I did some cleaning, spent time on the computer receiving and sending e-mails and just generally diddling around. I read for a while this afternoon and then went for a nice walk. John went for a bit of a bike ride and then late this afternoon got the truck repacked to head out tomorrow morning.

We had a nice chat with Mike this morning and I had an e-mail from a friend about a hockey game that was held in Beeton last Saturday. Beeton is where our kids grew up and Mike played hockey there and in his last year, before we moved to Kitchener, they played in the All Ontario Finals and lost in the final games but had a good run at it. Anyways, the team he played on had an exhibition game on Saturday, Mike went but didn’t play as he hasn’t had the blades on in a long time, but he said he had a great time seeing lots of his old pals and their parents. My friend, whose son played on the team, also said what a fun time it was, we are sorry we weren’t there for it as it would have been great to see all the kids, now grown up, and their parents again after so many years.

I also had an e-mail from Ron & Dee who we met at Green Acres in Kincardine last summer, they wintered in Texas and spent some time at this park on their way home, I had read it on their blog but had forgotten. They had said in their blog, and mentioned it again today in their e-mail, about finding lots of petrified wood behind their site here, which just happens to be right behind where we are, so I went out looking and also found some pieces, very interesting stuff. We saw lots of petrified wood at the Petrified Forest in Arizona but haven’t found it any place else so I was quite surprised to find it here – thanks Dee & Ron for telling us. We also agree with them that this is a really nice park and we also hope to spend more time here next year. Also, thanks for sharing the pictures of the snow you were getting at home today, we’re sure glad we aren’t there to enjoy it – LOL!!

I had an e-mail from my brother today and he said was checking out where Onalaska is on google maps and he went on the satellite view and could see the trailer park, he said it stands out very clearly – neat!

Tonight we went into Livingston and went to a Mexican restaurant for dinner, it was very good and I also had a yummy Margarita. After dinner we went to Wal Mart and the need to pick up a couple of things turned into a $100 bill, how the heck does that happen????

Tomorrow we are meeting up with friends from Kitchener (Ginny & Gil who we met in Tucson, Arizona about a year ago now) and another couple from Chatham who Gil & Ginny met in Oklahoma last year on their way home. We have invited them all for dinner tomorrow night so we are looking forward to meeting Brenda & Bob and seeing Gil & Ginny again. Brenda and I have e-mailed back and forth so I feel like I already know her a bit. Ginny said she would bring desert and Brenda offered to bring a salad so Bob is making potato salad, I’m already really impressed with Bob!!!

As always, today was another great gift of a day in the sunny, but windy, south and we look forward to another good day tomorrow.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Today was a nice day with highs of about 78F, this morning started out cloudy but then the sky cleared off and it turned into a beautiful day but was windy (hey, we’re in Texas and it always seems to be windy here!!). This morning I talked to our daughter Kel and my sister Pat so got caught up on what is happening with them.

We drove over to Livingston to get fuel, filled up at $2.089 at HEB, which was a good deal as every place else was $2.159/gal. After that we drove back and up along Lake Livingston to Trinity and while there we checked out a park there that I had looked at in the directory and we’re sure glad I didn’t pick it, it was pretty crappy and the roads in the park were terrible – bone rattling to drive through! We did a loop back home and stopped in Onalaska at the grocery store to pick up a couple of things and checked out another park across the river from here on the way by. It is a new park but the sites aren’t as nice, the roads are very narrow and it is right on the highway so again we are glad I picked this one.

View of the Park from Highway

When we got back I went for a walk and John went for a bike ride, we talked to our neighbours for a while, and just took life easy.

The Lake Isn't as Calm Today

Our Trailer

Our Mexican Lantern

Cottage Next to the Park

As always, today was another great gift of a day in the sunny, but very windy, south and we look forward to another good day tomorrow.