This evening our art show opened in Lafayette. I got lost along the Bayou Grosse Tête on the way and it was very interesting. There were high cane fields, a little ridge which I believe leads to Grand Coteau and beyond, small almost Caribbean style plantation houses, large trailers, and a genuine Bengal tiger in a gas station. Tigers are like cats.
People in Lafayette do not speak French but people from Mamou do. I have learned to speak New Iberia and Pont Breaux Creole but not Cadjin French. This does not matter because it is much easier to understand than Creole. I understand the prairie Cajuns very well and they understand me if I speak with a Spanish accent. “Nous-autres des bons rien,” stated one artist, referring to the Cajun cultural identity which, like the French one, appears to involve drinking wine. (In this sentence note the omission of the verb. Creole does that too.)
There were many Cadjins at the art show. Before my hair turned brown it was golden blond. My mother said that this combined with my brown eyes was very striking, and that I looked French. The prairie Cadjins have golden blond hair and brown eyes and they are very striking and look French.