Thursday, October 24, 2013

my great-grandmother

augustine babb thibodeaux

i dreamed . . .

 . . . an ugly black bird with skin instead of feathers watched me from a snow-frosted branch, all rubbery and warty like a turkey wattle.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

tante doy

five generations of doirons

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

i dreamed . . .

. . . I asked Luke if he was ready to go skiing. It was three in the afternoon, sunny, and there was a fresh blanket of snow on the ground. The day was almost over, and I knew if I didn’t get up immediately, I'd spend the rest of it lounging around. So I stood up with a start and poured myself a shot of whiskey.

Monday, October 21, 2013

gampy in catahoula

my grandfather Etienne Doiron
on the catahoula bridge 1946

the oldest man in catahoula

A snippet I recorded during last Saturday's Senior Citizens Day in Catahoula. This is Cajun French. Reminds me so much of my grandparents, whose primary language was this dialect. Cajun French was also my father's first language, and both my parents continue to speak it with older members of the community. I can understand a lot of it, but my generation was the first to grow up speaking English, so I can't speak it very well. The sound of it transports me to another time.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

my great-grandmother

Regina Doiron
my mother's father's mother

i dreamed . . .

. . . my mother looked out an open window in 1947 and sighed. A drought had doomed her pepper garden, turning her pepper plants into hay, and she didn’t know how to save them. She said, "I wish we had a HORNBLENDE."

my great-great-grandfather

Louis Doiron
my mother's father's mother's father

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

saute crapaud

from Saute Crapaud,
Acadian & Creole Songs for Children
Nancy Tabb Marcantel & Bill Russell 
Swallow Records – 1977

"Saute Crapaud" is one of the most well-known Cajun folk songs. "Crapaud" is French for TOAD or FROG and "Saute" means JUMP, so the title translates as JUMP, FROG! "Crapaud" also means BOOGER so that made the song extra fun to listen to as a child.

Monday, October 14, 2013

catahoula lake

vintage photograph courtesy Leona Thibodeaux

i dreamed . . .

. . . I was standing on a wooden boardwalk in an old Alaskan mining town, peeking through the open window of a grand Victorian home. A man sitting outside the diner next door warned me to stay away. “Very boring,” he said. “All they do in there is sing.”

Sunday, October 13, 2013

shoo fly

from Saute Crapaud,
Acadian & Creole Songs for Children
Nancy Tabb Marcantel & Bill Russell 
Swallow Records – 1977

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

rousseau's inn

The Weekly Messenger, 1928

Last Sunday a representative of The Messenger visited the Rousseau Inn at Catahoula Lake to look at the building and grounds. The building, which we believe is the largest in the state, for a restaurant, hotel and dancing, is built on pillars ten feet high, facing the beautiful lake, glassed in all around, with a fine floor, and lighted by 54 white globe lights.

the evangeline country & historic st. martinville

The Evangeline Oak, right; Attakapas trading post, center;
spire of Catholic Church, background; Bayou Teche, foreground
Since the Rousseau Catahoula Inn is located "in the heart of the Evangeline counutry," the following pages are devoted to a brief history of the Teche Country, St. Martinville, and the local version of the true story of Evangeline, which appears in "Acadian Reminiscences," by Judge Felix Voorhies, a direct Acadian descendant.
The multifarious changes that have come to the Teche Country since that far distant day when Evangeline roamed its banks, seeking her lover of the north, serve but to enhance its peculiar natural beauty. Broad pastures and fields of green with wavering harvests of cane and corn, set in relief the diminished forests of live oak, magnolia and the flowering tangle of her day, while the sky and water and delicacy of land contour remain ever and immutably the same.