Oh jeez, Louisiana. I thought you cannot surprise me anymore. A couple of years ago we spent over a week here and we ended up being so bored that we left the state and made our way through Mississippi to Alabama. It was fun to spend a weekend, but the whole week felt like too much.

This time New Orleans was very quiet compared to the rowdiness before the pandemic. But everything beyond the city keeps living its unique lifestyle in mysterious and muddy swamps.

From New Orleans we drove to Lafayette. Somewhere in between we made a turn to check out if any swamp tours are available. Everything seemed closed so we started backing up. But just then a woman from a nearby home came out and said that her husband can give us a private tour.

So in half an hour we were sitting in a boat and listening to the most incredible stories about hunting, swamp habitat, alligators and more. Turns out the guy is quite a celebrity himself - he participated in a TV show “Wife Swap” and had Beyonce over here, who was taking pictures for her albums with his alligators. We got to witness pictures with Beyonce, pet snakes, choppers in his house, alligators in the yard and much more.

Most importantly - we got a taste of living here. What skills are useful to hunt in the swamps, what to hunt, how people used to live here and how the locals distinguish strangers right away - “nobody, who lives here, can afford this boat” he said as a speedboat passed by. Louisiana, you taste like crawfish and look like an alligator - spooky, but I cannot take my eyes off of you.

On our way back I received an alligator tooth and words of wisdom: “If you lived here, you would not be afraid to cuddle alligators”.