Very Long Day in Opelousas on a Holiday Weekend

April 18, 2014 – Saturday

After a week at one campground in Boyce, we were ready to hit the road. We left the campground at 9:00 am, heading south on I-49. My plan for today was to stop in the city of Opelousas, not too far north of the I-10. We kept seeing bodies of water off the freeway with things sticking up in the water and people in fishing boats. When we got gas, I asked what they were. Was told they were catching crawdads. Later, they drain the water and they are rice fields. Didn’t get any good pictures.

Got to Opelousas Visitor Center at 11:00 and it was closed. In the same location is the Le Vieux Village, a historical park, also closed this weekend. We walked arounds the grounds, but didn’t get to go in any of the buildings or museums. The Louisiana Orphan Train Museum is also here and closed. The Farmers Market on the other side of the parking lot was…also closed. I’m beginning to think traveling on a holiday weekend to visit things are a bad idea.

In the photos below you will see us carrying our dogs in DIY dog carriers I made from a Schwinn bike bags. They are meant to strap to the handle bars of a bicycle. When I saw them in the store, I thought they were the perfect size to carry the dogs in. You don’t really want to know how many different carriers I bought for the dogs, and none of them were perfect.

We are in the Zydeco capital of the world the sign and brochures all said.






The city had a bunch of painted fiddles on display.





The steep stairs on the porches of old houses were how they got to the bedroom in the attic.
Across the street was the Myrtle Grove Cemetery from the mid 1800’s. I find these old tall grave stones interesting.



Across the other street was a popular looking BBQ place. Bill wanted to get some kind of cooked beans for his lunch, so we walked over there. This old building had a drive thru full of cars waiting. When we opened the door, we saw a big line of people waiting. Must have been good food, but we didn’t want to wait.

In the parking lot of the visitor center was a Mike’s Donut King. We saw beignets in the window, so I had to go in and get my first one on this trip. They are popular French donuts with powdered sugar in LA. Unfortunately, this one wasn’t worth the calories it cost me.



Next stop was to a flea market I read about called Spotted Cat Antiques & Flea Market. I was expecting a swap meet, but it was indoors. We put the dogs in their stroller and went in anyway. It was a large store, but we didn’t buy anything. Bill tried on a boa at a New Orleans booth.



We saw a grocery store next door, so went in for some fruit



Next we looked for another Flea Market. I put the address in the GPS and we ended up on some roads that made Bill nervous. I didn’t get too concerned till the GPS said to turn down a skinny, one lane road for another mile. No way. Bill got out and spotted me as I turned the RV around on the narrow road we had traveled down.



Next was to look for one of the two “famous” dance halls in Opelousas, called Millers Zydeco Hall of Fame, with dancing on the weekends. I was hoping we could go hear some zydeco music and get to practice what I learned on YouTube. When our GPS said we passed it, we turned around and went back. How could we have passed it? Turns out it was a ugly old building with just a small sign on it that we didn’t notice the first time. It was also in a rough looking neighborhood and not what I was expecting, so we didn’t even stop as it looked closed as well. There was one more dance place I read about called Slim’s Y-Ki-Ki, but by this time, I had seen enough of Opelousas and wanted to find our next campground.

We set the GPS for Lafayette and continued down I-49. There was one more flea market I read about in Lafayette and when we saw it right off the highway, we stopped. It was called Lafayette Jockey Lot Flea Market and this was more like what I wanted. Bill was too tired or had no interest, so he stayed in the RV while I tried to hurry thru it. Most of the people in stalls with no outside walls, but had roofs, sold new stuff. A few sold antiques or junk, along with your average Joe selling stuff outside around the flea market. The most amusing was the Worlds Largest Underpants on display with a waist size of 100″. There was a lady reading palms and selling psychic readings.



There was an interesting dog product called Anytime Collars. They are a harness and leash built in together. The idea sounded good, but they looked too big and bulky for small dogs I thought. I think they were $35.





So far, this is the only alligator we have seen on this trip. I buy Bill some beans from the food stand and a burger for me which I share with the dogs when I get back to the RV. Then we continue south, and pass the I-10 interchange, as the road is now Hwy 90, the more scenic road to New Orleans. Now that we are in a big city, we do a search for frozen yogurt on our iPhone and find Yogurtland and we are happy campers.



After our yogurts, I check for a Walmart that allows RV’s to spend the night. I look on a website that list all free places and places under $20. It gives reviews from people who stayed there and is updated frequently. We find a Walmart just a few blocks away. The neighborhood is nice, so we feel safe and stay. It was a LONG day and a LONG post on the blog!
Note: I’m still learning how to blog. The only way I can figure out how to add photos in the right place is to add them, then add text, add photos, text. I forgot to add a photo of the Jockey Lot flea market but it kept adding it to the bottom of the post.:-( oh well, I’m tired.






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