Day #30 – at the Cajun Fest – sucking heads and eating tails!!!

LOCATION:  New Iberia, Louisiana – at the 8th Annual Cajun Fest
CAMPGROUND:  Isle of Iberia RV Resort
WEATHER:  Very nice.  Mostly sunny.  High 84

In previous years, there have been about 200 people at this Cajun Fest.  We had signed up for last year’s rally, but it was cancelled due to Covid.  We rescheduled for this year, but many people did not – there are only about 60 of us here, which is kind of nice.  There are optional excursions you can do with the group during the day, then Cajun food together for dinner, followed each evening by an outdoor Cajun concert.  Lots of fun!

On my morning walk, I spotted this mama turtle digging a hole to lay her eggs. I think there are a lot of turtles around here….we see turtle soup on a lot of menus!

This morning, we drove into the nearby city of Lafayette (Cajun Capital of the World) to join the group at a family-run Cajun accordion factory. 

There were 3 generations represented.  The woman (2nd generation) is a former school principal, and now works full-time in the factory.  The family members (only) make Cajun accordions, repair them, and perform Cajun music.  Here she is showing us different kinds of accordions.  This is a traditional Lawrence Welk kind of accordion…

This is a concertina one  – one commonly used in Ireland….

And this one is the Cajun variety that they make and play.  Their signature design is a crawfish on the bellows…

The woman, plus her 80-year father (on the steel guitar), and nephew (vocalist/guitarist/accordion player) played several songs for us, showing us different styles.  It was just excellent

Then, another family member showed us how the accordions are made, all with beautiful wood based on the customers’ requests. 

Time for lunch!   As the George and I took off on our own, and found the kind of place that we love — sort of a local dive with great food and fun people. We were in the town of Breaux Bridge, where crawfish etouffee was invented. 

We shared a pound of boiled crawfish.  (This was the kids’ menu!)… some local craft beers.

You can get them lil crazy, crazy, or extra crazy (little spicy, spicy, or very spicy).  We got the spicy kind – perfect choice.

We sucked heads and ate tails, until we were exhausted.  The guy next to us put us to shame….he had 3 pounds.  He said he had eaten 10 pounds on Good Friday at a home-based crawfish boil party.

On our way back to the car, we watched a worker corral the crawfish for the boiler..

Drive-through daiquiris are a thing here.  It is like a drive-through McDonald’s, but serving alcoholic drinks!  Unbelievable!  Of course, we had to give it a go.

Here I am with the margarita-flavored daiquiri I ordered.  George chatted with the clerk.  She explained that they can sell these as a “sealed container”, thereby legal, by placing a piece of masking tape between the lid and the cup, and putting a paper-covered straw in the hole.  She said most people rip off the tape immediately, and drive out the parking lot, drinking merrily away.  We showed restraint and didn’t try ours until we returned to the RV park.  I can see why they would be popular on a smoldering hot summer day here.

When we left the drive-through, we spotted 2 more daiquiri shops in the same block!!!

DINNER:  Every night at the Cajun Fest, we will have a different kind of Cajun food.  Tonight’s meal was crawfish etouffee.  It was served over rice.  Sides were potato salad and corn.  Quite tasty! 

After dinner, we gathered around the swimming pool deck area for a Cajun concert.  The band played for 2 hours – accordion, drum, steel guitar, fiddle, and regular guitar.  They were very good.  Some of the group danced.  I even tried to do a Cajun line dance!

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