What was I thinking? How long have I lived here? It's August and I should have known better.
The husband mentioned yesterday about the Shrimp Festival going on in Delcambre, a fishing and shrimping village about 20 minutes from here. He mentioned it again today as something to do and like a fool, I agreed to go. We swept by Carrie's house and picked her up. I had bought along two big floppy hats. Carrie's was black and white checks while mine was a soft brown. Both hats have wide limp brims perfect for keeping the sun off our faces.
We headed down Rt. 90, the air conditioner shooting cold air over us as we chatted and laughed over Carrie's conversation. "Hip and lip." she chanted as she grabbed her right hip with her right hand while the other hand went to her face, the index finger crossing her lips in the universal gesture for "shhhhhhhhh". These are instructions from her first day in kindergarten last Thursday that the school employs to keep the students quiet and their hands occupied and off each other while standing in lines to and from the cafeteria and while moving through the hallways. We listened to her chatter, while the iPod played in the background.
The cane fields beside the road have now grown and stands over 5ft tall, lush and green. The farther down Rt. 90 the cane was tilted to one side and soon we passed fields that had the cane laying flat on the ground. The big storm that passed through here a few nights ago has taken it's toll on the cane farmers. Cane cutting is just beginning and it all has to be in to the mills by the end of September. I don't know if this cane can be salvaged but I'm guessing if it isn't the price of sugar might take a jump this spring. Farming is such a hit and miss proposition. This wasn't a hurricane that laid down that cane but a strong wind.
Sunglasses and hats on, we arrived in Delcambre ready to cruise the festival. Another 15 minutes and I was questioning the wisdom of a festival in August in south west Louisiana. 20 minutes into this fiasco and I had more then enough of outdoor life in this heat.
We headed for the shelters and bought some boiled shrimp and some deep fried shrimp. Sipping icy drinks of Root Beer and RC Cola, we huddled beneath the large metal roofed shed and listened to the band playing on the small stage. I cringed at the thought of heading back into the sunshine but Carrie was promised some fun on the carnival rides so we moved across the dusty, dried and hard packed lot and wound between the Ferris wheel, the tilt a whirl and a ride that looked like two bullets connected by mechanical gear that raised them skyward and completed the circle by hurtling earthward. These rides were not what Carrie and I were seeking.
We made about three rides before we both had enough of the sun, the heat and the dust. The husband had started his walk to get the truck and by the time we finished our three rides, he was waiting outside the gates.
Carrie's face was flushed bright red. I couldn't see mine but I'm sure I didn't look much better nor feel any better then she. We both wanted the interior of the truck and the ac.
I was so angry I didn't even want any conversation on the way home. Carrie passed out in the back seat and I adjusted the a/c vents for maximum coverage and 20 minutes later when we pulled into the driveway, I was just beginning to cool off.
I was angry that I had agreed to this trip. I know better. I hate the heat and a trip across the lawn to the mailbox is enough time outside. To agree to go to an outdoor festival in temperatures that are hovering around 100 degrees is just insane. It never sounds as bad as it's going to be until you're beneath that sun and the sweat is trickling down your sides, your clothes become saturated and the thought of having to peel them off your body when you get home is a real contortionist event.
The remainder of the afternoon was spend in the cool bedroom, the television tuned to some gosh awful movie about prehistoric sharks freed by an earthquake beneath the Pacific Ocean. A cast of bad actors, worse then believable looking sharks and lots of skimpy bathing suites to make up for the bad story line, it was still better then being outside.
Tonight the Saints play. It's preseason football and we will be watching. Carrie bailed on us. She plans on spending the evening at her sister's apartment. They have a pool. We don't. Carrie is fickle that way and I can't say that at five years of age, I wasn't the same.
It's game time. I'm under a/c and I'm a happy woman.