Wednesday, July 15, 2009

An Alligator, A Lake, and A Plate Lunch

We decided to order a plate lunch from one of our favorite Cajun eateries, Julien's Poboys. I chose my favorite item on the menu, the Shrimp En Brochette. When I tell you how sinfully delicious these succulent, highly seasoned, fried, bacon wrapped shrimp were, you know that I mean it, cher! I know, the calories, but who's counting? Oh cest' bon, cher! Since I only allow myself to indulge in these divine shrimp, once in a great while, I ate them with great delight and no remorse. They come with curly Cajun fries and a small salad. My friends ordered a Fried Catfish Platter, and a Hot Sausage Poboy. Both, also fabulous!

With morning thunder showers cooling things off a bit, we decided to take a little trip to nearby Lake Martin, this afternoon. Lake Martin is of the most beautiful places on earth and is home to many species of birds, as well as alligators, and wildlife known to the area. It is the largest nesting area of wading birds in the United States and is listed in the top 10 bird watching sites in America by the Audubon Society. At the end of the lake there is a Cypress and Buttonbush thicket with tens of thousands of waders, which include Blue Herons and Great and Cattle Egrets, plus over 2oo species in all. If you're lucky, you may spot a Great Horned Owl or Red-bellied woodpecker. (Click to enlarge, to see Heron)

Lake Martin is a broad, shallow lake that is so peaceful and serene, which makes it is a perfect place to reflect on the beauty of nature and perhaps do a little fishing or hiking. We were in luck today, and captured this shot of an alligator sunning himself. He was about 12 feet long and not the biggest in the lake, as some grow to be 15 to 20 feet long. Here and there, you will see alligator nests which are large mounds of of leaves and dirt. Don't ever get too close to the nests! About this time, we were wishing that we had a piece of bait, so he would open his powerful jaws for the camera. Something else to put on the list for the next trip. Another Cajun adventure awaits! They don't call Louisiana "The Sportsman's Paradise" for nothing! Where do you go to be with nature, where you live?



Jo said...

Omigosh...! Those alligators are incredible. I don't think I have ever seen an alligator. What an amazing part of the country you live in.

... Every time I visit your blog, I get hungry. You folks sure know how to cook...!

Eddie Bluelights said...

Watch out for those awful Alligators!!
Tell me please, what's the difference between a crocodile and an alligator? Always wanted to know.
Yes, I am like Jo - hungry!! after reading your post.
Thank you for your very kind comments at my place - you can have the top of my egg anytime ~ Eddie

Joanne said...

There's a beautiful salt marsh at the beach we go to, some of it right behind our cottage. Tall whispering grasses, salt water inlets visited by swans, egrets and herons. But no alligators in the water! The most you'll find here are minnows, crabs, that sort of thing!

Kora Bruce [Dixie Lust] said...

I know you remembered to wave hello as you passed by Gentleman Caller's new place right around the corner!

Unknown said...

Ummmm...yum. That would definitely make me feel better after the day that I have already had. My cat started a wasn't pretty.

Thanks for visiting my blog and yes...there always seems to be some cajun in ALL our festivities.

Elizabeth Bradley said...

You reminded me of lunch The Husband and I had once. We ordered a platter of shrimp cooked twelve different ways, to share. One stood out from the others, BIGTIME. When the waiter returned we asked him why that particular shrimp tasted so wonderful. We learned that the shrimp we were going bonzo for were wrapped in the thinnest bacon and grilled. Bacon and shrimp are a marriage made in heaven. I know you hear this all the time, but man I always leave here hungry! What a lovely lake. I love to watch the water birds. As far as the alligators go, the closest I've ever been is a crocodile that was right next to the boat I was riding in--at Disneyland!

Vagabonde said...

Your first photo is beautiful – I love those cypress in the water, that to me is very southern – we have them in Georgia too. I’ll take a note about lake Martin for our next visit to Louisiana, it sounds so interesting and full of wild animals.

Marguerite said...

Alligators aren't that bad, Jo, once you get used to them. You'll see live ones, when you visit Cajun Country. Thanks, good cooking is in the genes, here!

Eddie- The difference between a crocodile and an alligator is:
A crocodile will eat you, just for the heck of it, and an alligator will only eat you, if it feels threatened by you.
Thanks for the nice compliment, cher!

Marguerite said...

Joanne- The salt marsh that you describe sounds beautiful, and right in your backyard!! Must be so relaxing and inspirational.

Kora- I understand why your GC decided to move out, near Lake Martin. So beautiful! Hope you have a fun weekend!!

Living on the Spit- OMG, I couldn't believe your post today, about the fire at your house. Hope that the damage wasn't too bad. Have fun at blogfest!!

Marguerite said...

Elizabeth- These shrimp come grilled or fried, but I like the fried better because the bacon is crisp. Cest bon, cher! I love to watch the birds, too. Omg, a crocodile at Disneyland? Thankfully, we don't have crocodiles!

Merci, Vagabonde! The cypress trees are so beautiful and the lake is breathtaking. Definitely put Lake Martin and the Atchafalaya Basin on your list. Have a fun weekend!!

Laura said...

What a wonderful outing and that lunch- oh my gosh- it made my mouth water!

Enjoyed visiting as usual!


Marguerite said...

So good to hear from you, Laura. Will be posting this recipe soon.
Have a fun weekend!

Kat said...

I love reading your blog, there is always something interesting and exciting goin on down there in Cajun Country! I am hungry!

Marguerite said...

Kat- Thanks so much for your kind compliments, cher! You are so right about C.C. being an exciting place.
I had Crab Stuffed Jalapenos for dinner tonight and then went to a nice little jazz jam. Hope that you're having fun, too!

judi/Gmj said...

I can smell it! oh yum. Love the waltz. have a wonderful weekend let's start early!