Hey. For those thinking about coming out here for Mardi Gras, I recommend:

www.lsue.edu/acadgate/mardmain.htm They will update for 2006 any day now. Great photos of different Mardi Gras events out in the country listed by town. The courir, by the way, doesnít refer to a run in running shoes, but the horseback trail ride depicted in the traditional Mardi Gras song. I havenít decided yet where Iíll be on Tuesday. Plenty of courir to see all weekend. Iíll be in a small town somewhere.

www.bluemoonpresents.com has added great photos and lists events up to Mardi Gras. Lookiní good in the neighborhood.

Mardi Gras Season

I donít have a lot of time to write these days. Iím starting to see the signs of Mardi Gras season, which officially started at Twelfth Night. So people are playing the Mardi Gras song again. This is fine with me. I love the tune and the images it brings me of my first and only Louisiana Mardi Gras back in 1993. I ended up on a horse in le courir, six hours of bareback with some cowboy half my age. Fiddle in one hand. Iíve got the photos to prove it. Still a good story.

Itís great to know that Mardi Gras will be a part of my life on an annual basis. Of course Iím talking about the Cajun Mardi Gras out in these parts. Not the Carnival Mardi Gras associated with New Orleans.

New Orleans. I actually havenít ventured down there myself since the Katrina, having heard reports from my evacuee neighbors, co-workers, and friends. There is a lot of debate about whether they should have Mardi Gras down there. Lots of people are still in such grief they donít feel like celebrating. Then thereís the big idea that it will bring much needed financial support to the area. Iím thinking, if you canít find a hotel room howís that going to work? Anyway, thatís not my Mardi Gras.

Iíve also been upping my nights out, even with the ďcold frontĒ nighttime weather of mid 60s. The Blue Moon has outdoor heaters, and I was just fine in my new long sleeve Mello Joy T-shirt though several people were dancing in coats. The dance floor was packed for the Pine Leaf Boys. Theyíre so great. Wilson and Cedric and the boys were having a great time.

Wednesday night I took in Trio Creole at Cafť des Amis in Pont Breaux (Breaux Bridge). Cedric Watson and Jeffrey Broussard kept swapping instruments. díJalma Garnier had a grin on his face all night. Excellent meal. Amazing music. Small crowd. We grabbed a table right in front.

Thursday I was bad and missed two great shows: Racine (Mitch Reid and Kevin Wimmer) as well as a sold out Beausoleil. Thirty years of Beausoleil concert. I worked all day and fell asleep early.

Last night, yup, back to the full moon Blue Moon Saloon for the Pine Leaf Boys. They took my request for Blue Runner. The faces in the crowd are becoming more familiar and friendlier. Not to say they werenít friendly to begin with. I stand out like a European tourist with my height and coloring so people want to know where Iím from. Then they want to guess my accent. I get Minnesota, Maine, Ohio, Canada. Canada is close. I think people are starting to put it together that I am here to stay as my face becomes familiar too. Thereís the Blue Moon crowd, with predictable areas where certain people hang, as with any neighborhood pub.

Anyway, I got to go. Itís Saturday and my buddy and I are heading out to go to all the jams we can today. Off to Markís in Eunice, then to Mitchís for the afternoon and on to Folk Roots with Ray Abshire. If I am still alive tonight, Iím catching Corey Ledet at The Blue Moon.