We left our boat in Ft. Lauderdale with some new friends as
we headed back to visit family in south Louisiana for hurricane season. Hurricane season is always on our minds. After riding out a few of them to include
Katrina, we decided we didn’t really want to be on the boat if anything blew
The swamp house is nestled on a small island, amongst the
wildlife, where you need a boat to get to the front door. It’s perfect.
After living on a boat for 8 months it was second nature for us to load and offload luggage from the skiff.
Mom and Dad made the drive with us from south Florida. They decided to take the opportunity to visit their other son, the least favorite one, and their grand-kids.
Our time at the swamp house was cut short because, hurricane Isaac decided to roll right over us. We evacuated north to stay with family. It’s always a tense time,waiting out the storm and then waiting some more before you can head down and evaluate the damage on your property.
Brother-in-law Jimmy, owner of the swamp house and owner of great stories that have lines that include, “Hell I thought that gator was dead, I went and grabbed it’s tail and that bastard swung around and almost bit my hand off.” He chuckles and smiles at the pleasant memories of the story and then adds, “Yep, you learn how fast you can move in the swamps when a gator is trying to bite you.”
Well, Jimmy had to come down to the swamp house and rescue us before the storm blew through.
We rode out the storm in Wesson MS, and hoped the waters wouldn’t rise high enough to put water in the Swamp House.
Jimmy, like every good swamp man, owns an air boat, so the first chance we got, we headed down south to check on his property.
Three days later and the waters were still high and we had to launch the boat on the exit ramp from the interstate.
After the boat was launched on this exit ramp, we needed to make our way to the swamp house. Since the waters had risen, there were no real waterways only high water with trees and poles in the way. Sitting in the air-boat with Jimmy perched up high in the captains seat and the engine purring loudly, I patiently waited and then to my horror I heard the engine rev up and the air-boat went into a quick 180 degree spin as Jimmy decided we didn’t need waterways as we hurdled towards fences and small trees.
Where there was no path before, Jimmy created one. We slammed through the trees, poles and fences and landed the boat on the other side, in the canal where we could make our way to the camp.
Besides some pier damage, Jimmy and the swamp house survived without much damage. Unfortunately, they were the lucky few in Manchac that could make that claim. Many houses and camps flooded as people had to rip out the interiors of their homes and rebuild.
We had to wait two weeks before the power was restored to the swamp house. But we finally made it back to our temporary home.
Living in the swamps is interesting and a bit different from living on land. For one thing you often have to contend with gators on your pier, blocking your path.