Thursday, May 5, 2011

Something Old, Something New

Stunning "news from the hill" where the bulldozer has been moving dirt this morning and so we've officially begun construction on the house!!!  Wow!

 Joe is in Virginia for almost 2 weeks and has sent a few photos from the work that was done this morning.

As exciting as that is I'm sticking with news from Louisiana today..... the photos from Virginia will have to wait!!!

It was a gorgeous cool morning and I drove up to St. Francisville this AM.   After stopping at Birdman for a latte and the Post Office to mail Clark's graduation invitations, I went down to the Mississippi River ferry landing.

Though the road to the ferry was still open, it won't be long before the businesses at the end of the road are underwater.

Governor Jindal made an announcement yesterday that the St. Francisville-New Roads Ferry would be closing.

Not closing temporarily until the waters high waters recede..... but NEVER running again!  So what else could I do, but ante up my dollar and ride the ferry one last time?

Bernard the Mini was the second car in line and I only had to wait about 10 minutes before the ferry came over from New Roads and docked.

The ferry workers were waving at everyone as we drove aboard. 

We were on the VERY LAST St. Francisville to New Roads run so after the last car was loaded, two of the workers came out and posted the closed sign.

There was a bit of a festive party atmosphere on board as most everyone got out of their cars to mingle and talk on the way across.

All sorts of people were hanging out on the rails..... wait!

Time Warp!

That's a picture from 1977!!  It seems like just the other day.  

I was driving a red Triumph convertible back then.  

Now I'm tooling around in handsome Bernard.... pretty lucky over the years don't you think?

I was touched when the ferry blew it's horn on departure and everyone on the landing gave a farewell hurrah!

I got not only nostalgic but honestly felt chills at the thought that I was doing something that I'd never be able to do again.

The smell of the river, the wind, the current and the whitecaps......  It's the closest most of us can ever get to the powerful Mississippi.

One piece of history ends and another begins.... how to get back across the river and home?  

Do I see a bridge??

I drove south a couple of miles and waited on the side of the
road for the opening of the new Mississippi River Bridge!

Last night it was not only announced that the ferry was closing permanently but that the new bridge would be opened today.... several weeks early.   Quite a surprise as both of these announcements were made with less than 24 hours notice!

There will be some lane closures, lights added etc over the next months, but since it's safe for travel and the ferry was going to be out of commission due to high water then it was opened to traffic early.   So after the "powers that be" gave their speeches and cut the ribbon, off we went!

Sunroof open and windows down, as I drove through the cheering workers, one of them yelled out that we were the first Mini to cross!!!  Bernard has made history!

 Finally after years of wanting to see the bridge, I was up close and personal with the longest cable-stayed bridge in the Western Hemishpere!

Until today, I'd only seen graphics and a few press photos.  Although our house is only about 7 miles away, the bridge is totally out of sight several miles down a side road which until now has been closed to traffic.  
 There are 136 stays each wrapped in an orange sheath and containing between 20-69 individual cables.

I won't claim to have invented the name, but it's being called by some the "Class to Trash" bridge..... 

If you know St. Francisville and New Roads, you'd understand. :)

I'm thankful that I live on the Class side.  

Maybe that could be a selling point for the house.... "Located on the Classy side of the bridge"?


  1. I really like that belt in the "old" picture !!

  2. scrawny 21 year old... must have been when you were a vegetarian.

  3. Yep.... college days and before I knew your father too! I was stylin' in my beaded Indian belt from the souvenir shop and Lacoste shirt. I still have that bandana!


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