Laissez les bons temps rouler!

Originally uploaded by xadrian.
This past weekend, Tiger Lily and I drove to Louisiana for Festival International, a three day music and artisan fair in downtown Lafayette, LA celebrating Francophone and African inspired music.

We didn't actually go for all three days (four, I think it was officially open on Thursday.) The plan was to drive out Thursday night and do the festival Saturday, maybe Sunday. TG also had plans to visit her family and friends while we were out. I had plans to eat a lot of cajun and gulf coast cuisine. No one left disappointed.

Her family is from Abbeville which is about 20 miles south of Lafayette. Abbeville is home ot Steen's Pure Cane Syrup. The town is about 10,000 people and is surrounded by rice paddies and crawfish farms, as well as cane fields. It's an adorable little town with a very pleasant downtown.

While in Abbeville, we saw her dad perform at the Abbeville Players, they did Andrew Bergman's "Social Security." Before hand we had dinner at Riverfront and while the Crab meat au gratin was delicious, the etouffee was not. And at first I felt bad because while TG and her sister had made us ettoufee and gumbo, I always thought that going to a local restaurant was going to be different. The spices would be stronger, the roux would be darker or thicker. Something would differentiate itself from the home made fair I'd been used to - even though the makers were from the region.

I pushed through, trying to hide the distaste of the taste with vegetables and drink, but people noticed my plate was not being emptied. When they tried it, they agreed it wasn't good. TG's friend who worked at the bar blamed it on the teenagers cooking that night. Aside from that, the rest of the time I ate like a pig because I knew it wouldn't last. I think the high point was the crawfish and spinach bread bowl I had at festival.

The drive from Austin to Abbeville is about 7 hours. Some say it's six, but we left Austin at six with a stop in Houston for Lego (Lego store in the Galleria people!) and got in about 01:30. Same going home. My car does about 75 max, and the distance is 400 miles. Given the stops for gas and slow parts for small towns, I thought we did well.

Once in town we stayed at her parents house and the next morning we drove up to her old school to visit with friends and teachers. It's an all girl catholic school and I was one of three boyfriends. So the 8 of us roll in and it felt like I was part of a famous entourage, but as a support staff or roadie. We also visited her Nanny and we helped fix her computer. We got round steak and rice out of the deal.

Festival was just one day for us and I'm glad. We spent about 11 hours there and it was a really long day filled with good music and food and friends. We met up with her friends again later that afternoon but most of the time it was just the two of us walking around and pausing to listen to music. A couple bands we both enjoyed were De Temps Antan and Babik. Fishtank Ensemble sounded good but we didn't give them a long listen. The Givers were great, but not necessarily Festival Material. (They sounded like cross between Moldy Peaches and Phish.) The last band, Le Breastfeeders were high energy and a good way to spend your last bit of strength before heading home.

The following day was lazily spent eating, packing and driving. The drive home took just the same amount of time but felt longer as usual. We brought back a lot of happy memories, a couple bags of Lego and some full bellies. I think I'd like to go back for the Omelette Festival and the Star Wars exhibit in Lafayette.

Also, found my headaches were probably eye strain. My right eye was bloodshot the entire time but no headache, like a pressure valve was released. Two days back and they've started up again. Must get eyes checked.

This week is another history test, next month is full of birthdays. That's all for now.

No comments: