Don’t take anything for granted

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, October 4, 2011

I often write about taking things for granted. In south Louisiana, we take our food, our weather, our animals and most of all our surroundings for granted.

Several weeks ago, my wife and I went north, way north to Alaska and Canada. While on our cruise ship, we met two fun loving couples from Seattle. They were Steve and Zetta Leverett and Larry and Pam Olson. While getting the chance to talk with them, the subject of food and the lifestyle in Louisiana came up. I wonder how they figured out we were from the South?

I told them about eating crawfish, alligator, turtle, rabbits, squirrels and many other things. They began to laugh, and they called our crawfish, “mudbugs” and couldn’t believe we ate them. They also didn’t know we ate lots of other “road kill” things in Louisiana. They had never heard of nutria and were amused to hear about them.

They laughed when I told them our sheriff’s office receives calls on a daily basis about alligators or snakes in someone’s yard or property. And that they are caught and relocated to a different area of the parish.

While on this northern adventure, I was able to purchase an artifact for my museum. I found a walrus tusk from the island of St. Lawrence. The island is located north of Alaska very close to Russia. The tusk is about two thousand years old, and you can see that it was cut with a stone knife and then broken off. It is just as the Indians from Louisiana did with the deer antlers. They would cut them with a stone knife and then break them off, and they are also more than 1,000 years old.

Also while on this trip, we found that in Seattle, people like our newfound friends, the Leveretts and the Olsons, seem to take Mt. Rainer for granted. My wife and I were in amazed by the beauty of this awesome mountain that seemed to just fill the landscape, while those that live there and see it every day just take it for granted. So the next time you or your family take a road trip, just take a look around as you return and see the beauty of the land that others don’t get to see in south Louisiana and don’t just take it for granted.

While on the subject of road trips, just this weekend a new edition of “Country Roads Magazine” came out, and inside the October issue, my museum, Louisiana Treasures Museum, is featured with an article that also tells the story of the great storm that hit in St. John the Baptist Parish. The issues are free and located in restaurants and hotels around the parish. Pick up a copy and enjoy the story of the storm of 1915.

Louisiana Treasures Museum is located on Highway 22-West of Ponchatoula, and Wayne Norwood can be reached at 225-294-8352 for hours of operation or to schedule tours.

Wayne Norwood is a lieutenant with the St. John the Baptist Parish Sheriff’s Department and owner and operator of the Louisiana Treasures Museum.