Bowl of Gumbo!!! Today is Mardi Gras!!! It brings back so many memories. My first Mardi Gras … I was a graduate student in Mathematics at Tulane University. Of course, Tulane closed down Monday and Tuesday of Mardi Gras… and Wednesday, also. I was totally amazed that Tulane University would close down for Mardi Gras. Several Tulane-Math graduate students partied until way into Wednesday morning … and ended up sleeping in my apartment for the rest of the day/night. I am thinking my second Mardi Gras was about the same.. and so the third … the fourth … Pete and I were married and I had had Lori , January of 1963. I was not well … but … Lori’s first outing was the Carrollton (Mardi Gras) Parade … right in front of our apartment!!! Wonderful.
We left the New Orleans area in 1965 … we certainly remembered every Mardi Gras when it came around. In 1997, we returned to the New Orleans area … Hammond, Louisiana … home of Southeastern Louisiana University and 40 miles from New Orleans. We also renewed our closeness to Jennie Belle and Sergie. I had taught with Jennie Belle at Newcomb College. Hurricane Katrina flooded the area where Jennie Belle lived. Sergie escaped the terrible destruction … and since Sergie could use help with various household tasks, Jennie Belle moved in with him. Sergie’s house was right on one of the major mid-town Mardi Gras parade routes … if Pete were here, he would surely remember the name of the parade … but I cannot. With Sergie on the parade route, we could park in his drive-way … parking was always a problem along a parade-route … and set up chairs right on the parade route!!!
We began to plan for that parade date. Watch the parade on Sergie’s front yard … and share Dinner with Jennie Belle and Sergie… Jennie Belle would do the red beans and rice; she would also do the Mardi Gras cake … again I forget the name of the cake … with all the goo-eys. Wonderful … I loved that woman. We would return to Hammond with great feelings and delight … and sacks of beads from the floats from the parades. Wonderful … they became my beads to share with grandchildren and children of friends.
All these memories brought forward because of a “bowl of gumbo.” Pete made the best of black-bottom pies. cream pies, pizzas, … and gumbo. We would go south of New Orleans … to get the sausage. Pete would do sausage and chicken gumbo. Wonderful.
Happy Mardi Gras, everyone. Memories are beautiful.