Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Laissez les bon temps rouler!

 Well the title says it all, the good times continue to roll with friends, food and music here at Betty's.  It is hard to believe that we are more than half way through our stay. 
"The girls" did a day trip to Lafayette to lighten their pocketbooks and have lunch. Here are Kathy, Cookie, Nanc, Merlene, Bobbie, Peggy, Celine and Sandy ready to head out.  The guys enjoyed the day also:)
We did lunch at Dupuy's. Left are Charles, Sandy, Kathy and John.  Right are Jim C, Bobbie, me and Nanc.  It does seem like everyday is a good time here.
One pictures is worth a 1,000 words.  The crabcakes were to die for and the raw oysters that Nanc and I shared were the best ever.  If you love fresh seafood, this is the place.
A spring tradition in Abbeville is the free concerts on the square.  This year got off to a great start with an evening (three hours non-stop) of Zydeco music by Geno Delafose and his band.  They had the place rockin with their music.
The krewe from Betty's.  There were so many of us that Geno gave us a special shout out.
We were lucky to hear D.L. Menard, a Cajun musician from Erath, when he stepped up to sing his hit, The Back Door.  This was the icing on the cake for a wonderful evening.
It really is hard to sit still when you hear this lively music.  Here are Russell & Jan, Merlene & Dan, Sandra & Buz and Jim & Bobbie on the dance floor.  This short video of a little boy shows they start learning the music real young.
Jim bottom middle is responsible for all those smiling faces.  He slow cooked everyones ribs for a pot luck.  YUMMMMM.
Adult entertainment.  Buz showing off his BIG chair, drinks, bra and panties.  You can't say we don't have fun here.
The shrimp boat is coming.  We went to Delcambre to buy shrimp from Capt. Rene (bottom left).  People bought from 5 to 20 pounds and then we all gathered to clean our catch.  Of course you need Bloody Marys to do this job properly.
Our reward for having all this shrimp, Betty made a huge pot of her famous seafood gumbo. 
It sure got quiet while we were all gobbling down that meal.
The dinner was followed by a great jam session.  Top Dan plays and accompanies Peggy; Ray, Dave, Wayne and Dan jam and Barb belts out of tune.  Bottom Dave and Wayne join Margot and Celine all while Paul strums quietly in the corner.
Celine and Merlene had a really fun time that night.  No more will be reported.
The French ladies, Lise, Margot, Anita and Celine.
A view of Betty's you don't often see.  Australian Russ, who is a pilot, rented a plane to fly over the area and he took this picture.  Seventeen rigs packed tightly around Betty's house.  It's no wonder we make so many friends here.  The neighborhood is really small.
Tale of two couples. 
 Left are Charles and Sandy who pulled in on March 7 for a two day stay.  They quickly learned what it means to get caught in Betty's web.  Each day brought a new adventure with the prospect of more fun the following day.  This resulted in numerous extensions that required them to do the Betty Shuffle until the day Betty had to tell them all her spaces were rented.  That was March 25 so after two days turned into 19 they departed.  They shall return.  Right are Bobbie and Jim.  They had made a reservation for the month of March last spring when we were together in Colorado.  All went according to plan until they learned their summer job  required they be at a meeting in Utah April 2.  Thus the very sad faces as they had to depart early.  They too shall return.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

More Friends, Food, Music

As usual the good times continue here at Betty's with friends, food and music.  Many of these events are just part of the daily happy hour(s) while others are special events planned by our wonderful hostess, Betty.  There really is not another RV park like this anywhere.
While in the Keys we told the people all about Betty's and two couples decided to stop and check it out.  Their only disappointment was they could only get a spot for two days.  Here are Paul, Trudy, Betty, Kathy and Joe just before they pulled out.  They assured us they would be back.  I am going to stop telling people about this place.
Sometimes, things just happen.  One afternoon I heard music and found Paul, Dan, Bobbie and Peggy jamming on the deck.  Who knew these ladies had such great voices?
When Lois and Brad walked into happy hour she looked at Nanc and said, "I know you".  Turns out she had taken the exercise class Nanc taught at the Escapade in Gillette two years ago. It is a small world we RVers live in.
Happy Hour!!!!!
Scotty (Scooter) O'hara heard about Betty's from Lois and Brad who he met at a local restaurant and showed up for a two day stay that turned into five.  Of course he had to do the Betty shuffle but he is now caught in Betty's web.  Scooter is traveling the country with Wang and has chronicled their travels in a very interesting blog, Life with Wang.  I have added a link to his blog under my blog list.  You need to check it out to meet Wang and read how Scooter describes their stay here.
Scooter and Dan started jamming during happy hour and a few of us joined in.  Nanc and Jim C on the left and who knew, me on the guitar. 
That same evening Brad brought out his karaoke machine and suddenly the place was rocking.  Top are Dan & Merlene, Betty & Shirley and Ruth & Betty.  Bottom are Betty & Charles, Sandy and Bobbie & Jim C.  We were all rockin.
I always kid Bobbie about putting pictures of food in her blog but now realize I talk about food so much here that a picture is worth a thousand words.  On Saturday for lunch we went to Suires, a little grocery store restaurant in nearby Kaplan that has been written up in the New York Times.  Here is the group and Bobbie taking a picture of her gumbo.
Kristi, a local woman who is one of the stars of the TV show, Swamp People was doing a promotion in Abbeville.  We had met her at Betty's last year so we just stopped by where she was doing the appearance so Scooter and Wang could met her.  That is Wang that Kristi is holding in the gators mouth.
And if it is Saturday it is a Cajun Jam Session.  Jean Paul and Celine (middle with their backs to the camera) are always there in the front row from the start to the finish.
Usually they are wallflowers, but this week Black Foreman and his wife Meon got them out on the dance floor.  Who knew they were so light on their feet?
Sunday was St Patrick's Day so it was holiday food Cajun style, corned beef, cabbage, potatoes and, of course, crawfish.  I love it.  Top are Drena, Wayne & Marvin; Betty & Nanc and Cookie & Jim.
A few more revelers.  Top left are Anita & Gary (whom we met here and visited in Winnipeg last summer), me, Barb and Rich.  Bottom are Australian visitors Jan and Russell who sang Waltzing Matilda for us.  You really never know who will show up at Betty's.
More St. Paddy's Day partiers.  Top left are Jean Paul, Merlene and Charles. Bottom left are Peggy, Paul and Celine. Right are Bobbie and Jim. 
And Wang meets a mudbug.
And, as always, there was music.  Dan, Dave, Scooter and Judy entertained us all.  It is hard to believe that there is so much to do here??? FUN, FUN FUN!!!!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

More Friends, More Food, More Music

Yes, it is more of the same old things (not really) at Betty's with friends, food and music.  With all the retirees here it is never TGIF, it is TGIR-Thank Goodness I'm Retired. 
We did a road trip with Jim and Bobbie to Lafayette that included a stop for lunch and three different places to do some food (what else) shopping.  We did visit Cajun Picasso where Lori, an artist who is at Betty's, has some work for sale.  It is a neat little gallery with both antiques and folk art.  We just happen to have a piece of Lori's artwork hanging in our motorhome.  She is quite the artist and most of her work is painting on old cypress wood gathered from the bayou. 
If it is Saturday it is a Cajun Jam Session.  This week was at the Museum Cafe in Erath.
Pictured are a few of us enjoying the music.  Top left are Ollie, Nanc, Bobbie and Jim.  On the right are Jean Paul, Celine, Sandy and Charles.  Bottom are Dan and Merlene.  The background is my to go plate.  A tradition here is a free feed for everyone after the jam session.  This meal was rice, beans and a wonderful pork roast.
Another big day at Betty's.  We had Sunday brunch with mimosas and Bloody Marys along with all the fixins. 
We all had a choice of what we wanted in our omelets.
 The cooks Betty, Steve and Dave prepared them for us.  Here is Dan waiting for his omelet.  I knew Dave was older, but I did not realize he had been the model for Michelangelo's David.
One happy retiree with a full plate.  Omelet, meat, fried sweet potatoes and biscuits and gravy. WOW!!!!!!
Pete, Marge, Dan and Lori enjoying the breakfast.
More happy campers have an after breakfast drink.
And more music.  Local accordionist, Black Foreman, taught Dan a bit of Cajun and they entertained the group.  Black not only plays, he also makes accordions.  Here is a short video where you can hear Dan, Dave and Black playing.  What a treat.
And the group loves it.
More funseekers.
After the morning brunch and a bit of Cajun music we all went to The Beehive in the afternoon to hear Judy Bailey, Gerald, Dave and Benny.
And once again a fun time was had by all,
We even had a chance to hear Dan make his public debut when he stood in for Judy for a few songs.  His guitar pickin has really gotten better since we were here last year.  SO MUCH FUN!!!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Crawfish Boil, More Fun & More Music

The fun times here at Betty's continue with all the usual ingredients of friends, food and music.  We have been here for two weeks and can't believe we have already done so many things.  And it appears that there will be no end to the good times.  Some people have moved on only to be replaced by a new group of funseekers.   I always learn new things here and this week ended with me going places I never dreamed I would go.  Read on. 
Some things that happen at Betty's shall remain at Betty's.  Let's just say that time has been known to literally fly while we are here.  I think the new clock looks great.
We had a wonderful late lunch with Jim, Bobbie, Dan & Merlene.  Bobbie made a very tasty shrimp, crawfish etouffe.  Here we are starting the meal with apple pie of the liquid kind.  MMMMMM!!!!
Every day at 4:30 is the start of happy hour(s) where we all gather to meet new arrivals and swap stories about our day and future plans while sharing appetizers and drinks.
We have learned to love crawfish and having a boil right in the park is the best way to enjoy the mudbugs and have an all day party.  Right is chief cook Wendell putting the potatoes, onions, corn and sausage into the pot.  Left is apprentice Jim unloading one of three 30 pound sacks of crawfish that came straight from a nearby farm.  And, Nanc with an important ingredient, Bloody Marys.  The live crawdads in the background are being cleaned and purged.
Jim and Marvin are pouring the crawdads into the cooking pot while Wendell adds the seasoning.  Timing is everything and Wendell makes sure they are cooked perfectly before putting them into a cooler (heater) and dusting them with more seasoning.
Everyone in the park gathers around the pot (proving a watched pot does boil) to wait in anticipation of the feast to follow. 
Paulette has a different reaction to holding a live, wiggling crawfish than Nanc and Brenda.
When they are all done they are dumped on the table.  Wendell is finally getting a well deserved break before he digs in.
Only a couple of people did not eat the mudbugs and all 90 pounds were gone by the end of the day.
So many smiling faces.
They were wonderful.
A special thanks to Wendell and Jim.
After stuffing ourselves with crawdads we had an evening of great entertainment provided by Benny (sax), Judy and Dave.
RVer Paul joined in.
They had the place rockin!!
Benny's 92 year old father joined in with his accordion for a few Cajun tunes.
They had them dancin' in the aisle in Betty's Louisiana Room.
California Cajun Dan then joined in for a few songs. 
What a great time.
To those who know me this will come as a BIG surprise, but even I stepped in to join Benny for a tune.   You really never know what will happen at Betty's RV Park.  It's magic!