Golf Carts & Louisiana Yard Dogs
Camping In Southern Louisiana
We were about as far south as you can go in Louisiana. Signs warned to watch for Louisiana yard dogs. Restaurants advertised crawdads and gumbo. Spanish moss hung in large clumps from trees with huge roots; Cypress I suppose. The park was hidden behind two truck stop casinos... I had heard it was a nice place to stay from another RVer back near the Bottomless Lakes near Roswell, NM.
Of course I flew past since there were no signs for it posted along the highway. I arrived in the nearest town and went down a side road to find a place to turn around. My heart sank when I realized what I had done. Ahead of me a barrier blocked the end of the small two lane road. A house that had been converted into a restaurant sat closed giving me a little room to make a U-turn. Not enough room, I soon discovered.
I wouldn’t have much problem turning a motorhome around whether it was 25’ or 45’ long. However when towing another vehicle flat four (with all four tires on the ground), you cannot back up even a few inches without causing serious damage to the tow bar along with the front end of the tow vehicle. Now, I sat with the RV angled in a small parking lot and the Jeep I was towing at a 45 degree angle in the roadway. I got out of the RV to check my options and saw a couple highway patrol officers watching from the main road. I thought I was going to get some help but then watched as they drove away.
With some difficulty I was able to disconnect the Jeep and drive it into a grassy area next to the building. Once the RV was back in the road facing the opposite and correct direction, I reconnected the Jeep. I was almost soaked from the effort in the high humidity and heat of southern Louisiana.
A quick call to the park and I had my directions. Through a mobile home park and behind a warehouse sat a really nicely laid out RV park. Behind the counter in the office a very nice lady who was one of the owners signed me up and pointed through the window at a pull through site. Parking and set up was straightforward and after I had everything set up, I took Charlie (dog) for a walk around the area.
I guess it was around three in the afternoon on a Friday back in June. Though there were quite a few trailers and motorhomes, it was quiet. After a much needed shower and quick nap, I relaxed outside under the awning with Charlie at my feet. A large four wheel drive truck drove by and stopped at a nearby trailer. The driver got out and without going into the trailer, reached into the back of his truck and pulled a beer from a cooler. He then hopped into his golf cart sitting in front of the trailer and drove around the small park. Soon, another truck pulled in and went to a different trailer repeating the ritual. He too, got on a golf cart and drove around until he saw his friend and they parked like two cops do opposite each other in a shopping center’s parking lot.
I watched as a half dozen trucks came into the park and the drivers doing pretty much the same thing. Soon, wives and children emerged from some of the trailers and joined their spouses riding with them in the little carts. Around and around they drove stopping only to replace their drink with a fresh one.
Clouds had begun to form and rain began to fall. Ponchos were donned and the carts kept running in the wet weather. As night began to fall and the rain grew heavy, I saw the group parked under a covered dock by a fishing lake that was fed by a nearby swamp.
Turns out most of the folks at the park lived there full time to take advantage of area job opportunities. With little to do other than hitting the local casinos or eat at one of the few diners, there wasn’t much to do and these folks were making the best of their current situation. The carts were owned by the campground and rented out on a monthly basis. There was no doubt they were having fun riding around visiting and socializing.
I was just passing through and stayed just a couple of nights but will always remember the happy folks in that deep South Louisiana RV Park as they cruised the park in electric golf carts much like we did way back when around and around small town squares in our hot rods during our teen years.