Wandering February 11, 2016Posted by The Typist in cryptical envelopment, New Orleans, Pedestrian I, The Narrative, The Typist, Toulouse Street.
When I first came home to New Orleans, I was working out of a converted kitchen cum office. I would often take a lunch break to step away from the massive monitor to bathe myself in sunlight instead of the cracklin radiation of the CRT. As it was closest, I often found myself wandering the groves south of Bayou Metairie.
That is where I walk today with more purpose: briskly for exercise, sometimes for distance, often just to be among the great trees, to catch a glimpse of the anhinga that haunts the west end of the cutoff remains of the Bayou.
Anyone who lives near this end of the park knows the air whistle of the miniature train that wends its way around the south end of the park. It has been a fixture of my life since childhood, when the trains were a streamliner style engine and cars, and an Old Smokey engine with false pistons tied to the wheels, a Smokey Mary stack, and most incorrect confederate flags flying at each side of the cow catcher. Those trains are gone. I miss the Old Smokey Mary (but not the flags), the actual tie-in of the decorative pistons and arms to the driving wheels, the antique look of it.
It does not run all of the time, only weekends and the long Celebration of the Oaks. What is always present is the line’s curving tracks wandering among the trees, another path I sometimes wander along the ballast or stepping gingerly along the ties.