Fresh shrimp, pecky cypress, a baby crab and much, much more!

Well, Deloutre Switch and The Miller are gone, and I miss them already. DS and I worked together years ago, when I was fresh out of college. I hadn’t seen her in about 25 years, and I was so excited when she found me on a google search last year.

Now, we have reconnected, and she and The Miller were the first to stay in The Cypress Cottage. It’s not nearly finished, but there were enough amenities to be comfortable, I hope.

First thing on Day One, we went in search of fresh shrimp, a first for DS.

These are the big ones—-called “15”. That means it takes 15 of these to make a pound.

And then the “20-25”, which are smaller, of course. We bought about 50 pounds right off the shrimp boat and sat in the back yard preparing them for the freezer.

DS held her first ever baby crab. She did that just like a pro!

And how about a commercial fisherman and his “catch of the day”? This is the one and only Bayou Fabio with his big alligator gar. He posed for this picture on the promise of a printed copy of it ASAP. By the way, ladies, he’s not married, and he’s “looking for a blonde with brains”!!! Any takers?

While we girls “broke heads” and chatted just like we were shelling peas or snapping beans, The Miller was busy inside the cypress cottage on his own special project.

He went right to work installing pecky cypress in the dining room.

He envisioned this from photos and cut the lumber himself. This beautiful wood came from a big cypress log that he reclaimed from the Ouachita River.

Having been cut down years ago (which I would never advocate now), the logs somehow got away and sank to the bottom where they may have lain for 100 years or more. (Photo courtesy of DS)

After they float up, and when the river is just the right level, he reclaims them, dries them out, and mills them into beautiful boards. I will see The Miller in every one of these boards on my dining room wall.

My old friend and her miller husband could not have given me a more thoughtful or generous gift than this rare wood. I really do love it. Thank you both from the bottom of my pecky cypress heart!

After all our hard work, we fried a wonderful batch of golden, delicious shrimp for a late lunch. Sorry we didn’t do a step by step photo shoot of that, but we were STARVING and just couldn’t take the time! Believe us when we say they were so good—-fresh from the water and into our meal.


To be continued . . . .

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  1. Hey? How much did ya pay for the U-15’s? Those were beautiful. Loved the gar and its owner too.
    But all I can think and say, with my mouth hanging open, is the cypress just amazes me. Wow! What an amazing gift. I know how dear to your heart the old wood is but mostly how dear The Miller and DS are for giving you that great gift. And installed yet! Lovely friends and they look happy to be with you. Glad y’all had a great time.

    The price was good for my friends but not so good for the shrimper – The 15’s were $3.50 a pound! The small ones were $2.25 a pound.

  2. When will “Smell-e-vision” be installed on this Blog? I’d LOVE a sniff of that cypress and the shrimp. You MUST have made a real, lasting impression after so many years for them to bestow you with such a gift. I must be doing something wrong. I’m lucky to get a mess of mustard greens during the winter months!

    Oh, that cypress does smell so good. Reminds me of my great grandmother’s porch every time I smell it.

    It’s not so much that I made a good impression, but more that they are just great people!!! Man, I wish I could get mustard greens in the winter!!!!

  3. Choup beat me to it! Out of all of those pictures, I thought, “Hey Mom, nice pedi!” *lol*

    Now you know dat is funny!

  4. What a great post! If this doesn’t give a true vision of Louisiana life, nothing does. I’m glad you had a good visit with your friends.

    After you get back, we’ll have us a girls’ night in the Cypress Cottage. I’ll bring the wine. You bring the cheese and crackers!!!

  5. *Channelling Janessa* “You know you DO have a nith bottle of that reithling in yo’ refrigerator!”

    You silly girl! That’ll be long gone before Kim gets back from her travels!