Yes ma’am, no ma’am, y’all. Can you guess where I am? Gulfport Mississippi.
When my plane landed in New Orleans I called Lan to see if I should put on a sweater. She laughed and told me there was no need. “Are you sure?” I asked. “I get cold all the time. And it’s only 8 in the morning.” She assured me there was no need. As I stepped out of the baggage claim area onto the street I was engulfed in a nice balmy air. It felt perfect.
Before I booked my trip to Mississippi I asked Lan, the friend I would be staying with for two weeks, if the humidity would be bad. “I don’t think so. Some people think it’s hot.” I wondered when would be the best time to go with the least humidity. I decided on the last two weeks of May. I packed my lightest outfits and hoped for the best.
Since we were in New Orleans we went to the World War 2 museum. After the World War 2 museum we ate at the restaurant on site. You can get coupons for a free drink or pie at the information desk. I hardly ever drink alcohol but sitting outside, eating fried chicken and Mac and cheese, a lemonade sector drink sounded perfect.
I had booked the red eye flight and usually I don’t have trouble falling asleep, but this time I did. After the World War 2 museum I was so wiped out I feel asleep as we left New Orleans. When we arrived at Lan`s home I went straight to bed and slept for another 12 hours. The next day Lan, her husband Howard, and I went around the rural areas of Gulfport. Lan technically lives in Saucier, which is not pronounced how it looks. (Sew-sha not saucer.)
When we drove down one road I saw three weirdly shaped trailers. I couldn’t figure out what these trailers were or what they could be used for. I finally asked and Howard replied that it was a Mardi Gras float. Mardi Gras isn’t just in New Orleans. I have never been to Mardi Gras but the colors associated with it are purple, green and gold.
As we traveled around Lan and Howard asked me if I knew where I was. I had no clue. It was hard to distinguish where we were, there are no mountains or hills to use as a compass. The plant life here is so lush and abundant it makes me think of a jungle. I’m used to forests but the foliage is so thick it’s like a green wall. If you decided to walk around beware of fire ants. They are teeny tiny but their bites hurt!
We stopped for lunch and Howard asked me if I wanted to try fried catfish. At first I said Nope! But he bought some and they looked like skinny chicken strips so I tried it. It was delicious! It was plain tasting which is good for a picky eater like me!
We met a young gentleman and it was the first time I really heard the southern accent. I think he said no ma’am, yes ma’am at least 15 times. I could have talked to him all day, I love the southern accent! Hearing so much politeness made me feel like I need to incorporate ma’am and sir more into my vocabulary.
We met up with a couple of Lan and Howard’s friends. It was interesting talking to them. Even though Hurricane Katrina was almost 10 years ago it’s still very much talked about. You can still see the effects of Hurricane Katrina in this area. There are FEMA houses in many places. These houses were temporary aid structures for those that lost their homes. I was able to spend time with one who opened her house to many disaster relief workers. Five of my friends came down to help after Katrina as relief workers, but they were based in Baton Rouge.
When we left the deli I picked up a weekly tabloid called Jail House Times. I laughed as I looked at it. It shows local mug shots and has sections such as Hairstyles straight from the Jail Cell-Mullet of the Week! Check out their Facebook page. As we drove back to Lan and Howard’s place Lan told me we were only a few minutes from the beach. But that would be for the next day, I was plumb tuckered out.