Our stay at Maxies RV Park in Broussard was up so Friday we headed over to the Crawfish Festival in Breaux Bridge, just a few miles north east. Since the distance was short I drove the car and followed Joel over to the Hardy Parc, location of dry camping for the festival.
We left Maxies RV park mid-morning but didn't arrive at Hardy Parc until about 4:30 due to :
Because while turning the corner the back tire of the motor home caught this:
I heard the initial "whoosh" and "pop" and radioed Joel he had a blow out. There was a huge parking lot just a few feet from where the blow out occurred which also happened to be right a cross the street from a tire shop. What luck! The tire shop did not have the right size tire, nor did they work on big rigs, but were very helpful in recommending a local tire repair company. Joel called J & C tire ("You flat 'em. We fix 'em"), and explained what was needed. Joel had decided he would replace the two front tires and move one of the front tires to the back where the blow out occurred. This meant J & C had to track down two new Micheline tires per Joel's specification. After much back and forth on the phone and dismounting and mounting we were on our way by 4:00. It could have been much worse but since we were in a business area off the highway everything went pretty smoothly.
As an aside, Joel did call Coach Net to see if they would pay for the service charge. They were extremely helpful and told Joel to send in in the receipts. J & C was not on their list so Joel would have to pay up front and get reimbursed. If we had bee stranded I know Coach Net would have been there for us.
When we arrived at the Hardy Parc, Max had arranged special parking away from the rest of the RVs, i.e. a quiet place. The past week at Maxies has been convenient but very noisy right on Highway 90. We went over to the festival and enjoyed Cajun and Zydeco music as well as some freshly cooked crawfish and jambalaya. (My fingers were too messy from the crawfish to handle the camera and take pictures.)
Saturday we headed to Avery Island, the place were Tabasco pepper sauce is made. On the way we stopped in St Martin, the heart of Arcadiana. We also visited the memorial to Evangelina, the subject of Longfellow's poem "Evangelina".
We had a nice picnic lunch when we arrived on Avery Island to tour the Tabasco factory. The Tabasco country store sells a box lunch for tour participants which we passed, but we did sample the Jalapeno and Spicy Hot ice cream. Interesting.
Avery Island is owned by the McIlhenny family who grow the special peppers and make the pepper sauce. The pepper sauce is made much like wine where peppers are mashed and ferment in oak barrels for three years and then blended with vinegar and strained and bottled. The resulting by product of mash is used for seasoning candy other spicy foods.
The name Tabasco means hot and humid, much like the weather in this area.
Saturday evening we returned to the Crawfish festival which was much more crowded than Friday night, and enjoyed more Cajun and Zydeco music along with some modern day classic rock. Sunday was much quieter, but the festivities continued until 4:00 in the afternoon.
Our next stop will be in Baton Rouge for a day or so. When taking the tires off, Joel noted the brake pads were getting thin,so he will try to get the brakes serviced in Baton Rouge before we head up the curvey ,windy roads of the Natchez Trace towards Tennessee to catch up with my son Jason and his wife Rhonda.