Rain – Way Too Much

4/3/13 Wednesday at New Orleans, LA (Bayou Segnette State Park)

I didn’t get much sleep the night before, so I was anticipating a really good night with all the quiet here (no highway noise, trucks). Unfortunately last night was worse. Knowing it could rain we closed all windows and placed the “rain catcher” in the bedroom, and the dishpan under a prior drip spot at our sofa.

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At 3:44 am I awoke to rain (I love the sound) and dripping sounds. Good, the rain catcher at work. I did my bathroom business, then thought I’d check the rain catcher. It was overflowing! Frantic, I sloshed lots of water onto the carpet as I struggled to get it out of its tight spot. I dumped it in my sink, replaced it, then struggled with every rag we had to sop up water. I kept checking the rain catcher. It seemed to fill up within the ½ hour, so I stayed awake, dumping it that often. After a couple dumps in the sink I realized that’s gray water and we don’t have sewer, so we must be careful with what we send that way. The rest I dumped in the toilet, which is black water and has room to spare. When John stirred at 7 am, I filled him in and told him it’s now his shift. The first dump he put in the toilet, then he got smart and through it out the front door, into the pouring rain.

I am thankful we weren’t in a tent, like a neighbor here. I am thankful we weren’t in a small trailer or tent trailer because I remember how much the metal magnifies the sound of heavy rain. I am thankful for having a dryer, to run it all day drying our cloths that soaked up water.

Agenda: watch our drip catchers, dry our rags and towels, get a slide or 2 or 3 in, then attend to ongoing home affairs.


It stopped raining by 11 am, then pelted us with wind gusts. So we visited Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve in the afternoon. What at amazing place. The water and green make it just beautiful. This is a Bald Cypress in the bayou. These trees grow for 100’s of years, are a soft wood, yet resistant to rot and are durable. They wood can last for 1,000’s of years. They can grow to 100 ft high and 15 ft in diameter.


Bald Cypress with their Cypress Knees (woody projections from the root system that appear above the water (ground)






Monarch of the Swamp – A Bald Cypress left behind by the loggers.






Swamp Lily







Giant Blue Iris







Alligator #1







Alligator #2







Alligator #3







Alligator #4







Palmetto Trail







Marsh Rabbit. Different coloration – to blend in his surroundings. Sorry I couldn’t get his face, he didn’t want to hang around for me.





Shaded swamp gives way to sunlit marsh.







Bald cypress covered with Spanish Moss. To the right is “flotant”, a series of floating islands of peat soil.





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North and South views of the Bayou Coquille (Kenta Canal)











The bayou – so peaceful, so lovely.

When we got home we quickly brought in the bedroom and kitchen slides, so they won’t leak tonight. I’ve GOT to get more sleep.

John made a fabulous supper of grilled roast beef sandwiches with grilled onions and cheese. We added popcorn on the side. Yum!


About Patricia Elser

I've always loved the loose, flowing, transparent look of watercolors, of Chinese paintings and their calligraphy, but alas, no watercolor classes were available when I was in school, so that interest remained buried until my children were grown. Even then, I was afraid that I couldn't really paint, so upon my sister's advice, I actually started to take classes. I signed up for every class available, determined to learn no matter how afraid I was. I came upon a teacher, Stan Miller, who inspired me, who opened the door to success in watercolor. I love to look at beautiful images. I want to capture them forever. All my life, photography was how I gathered images of the beauty I saw. Thanks to all that photography, I enjoy composing pictures, especially up close. Watercolors allow me to add more of me in their translation of that beauty. My paintings reflect my love for music and dance, with their rhythm and flow. I am fascinated by the play of light, so it appears in my pictures as drama for they are filled with darks and lights. Maybe it's the challenge, maybe it's the beauty, but now, when a work comes together, it fills my soul.
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