Port Sulfur, Louisiana
It's nicknamed "the end of the world" because its southern most town Venice, is located about 75 miles south of New Orleans and is situated on the west bank of the Mississippi river.
I was born in a little town north of Venice called Port Sulfur. My parents lived there a very brief time before moving back to New Orleans.It had been more than twenty perhaps thirty years since I had made the journey down to that part of the county. There was not a lot there when I was a child except oil wells, fishing boats and bar rooms. Then there was Katrina in 2005 that destroyed everything. I had a deep longing to go back and see? See what? I wished I knew.
My mother had two sisters and a brother that lived in this area. One of those sisters had orange tree orchards just like this one. I recall how we used to play in the orchards on hot summer days. I remember heat, humidity and mosquitoes...lots and lots of mosquitoes.
And so I had made it here. And just as I had thought there were still many signs of hurricane Katrina plain and visible for all to see. Even the sulfur refining company for which the town is named for is no longer there. Most folks are still living in trailers. Some of the businesses are operated from trailer like structures.
I had kind of thought I might find the actual place where I was born. It was once just a little white wooded building that was situated among many trees. We stopped and asked one of the elder locals if he knew where the old hospital was. He did know and directed us right to where it once stood.
One of the first things I noticed was how very close to the Gulf of Mexico it was. Here we are in our car on the levee overlooking the gulf. This levee is about fifty yards from where the little hospital once stood. Is it any wonder why I have such an affinity for water?
Here is the little group of trees where my journey began. I was happy to find it and unable to articulate why, but my thoughts went something like this. "See here it is! This is it! Yes sir ree! One day fifty-eight years ago my Momma came right here to this very spot and gave birth to me!" I wondered how things went for her--did she experience a lot of pain? How long was she in labor? From my birth certificate I recall weighing in at just a little over nine pounds and made my debut entrance into this world on the night shift. Funny thing huh?
I had to post this picture just for proof that you do ride down Hwy 23 look up and watch boats go by. This boat was on the east side of the road so it was traveling on the Mississippi river. East side River--west side Gulf of Mexico.
It was good to see that even the people "at the end of the world" still have hope. Without the cross how hopeless we all would be.
I asked my husband to let's just drive until the road ends. I wanted to go all the way to the very end of "the end of the world."
I was hoping to find the end of the road, perhaps a sunset, a rainbow maybe? Nope...we found water. Water on the left, water on the right and water straight ahead. It is a land located below sea level...add a little rain and this is what you get. We probably got within a half mile before the end and decided not to push our luck and car one more inch and turned around. I didn't think our little car would make it but it did.
Water is a good thing though. Water equals life. And the end of the road is not always what it seems and that is a good thing as well. I was happy to have made this journey.
The End Of The Road Is But A Bend In The Road
by Helen Steiner Rice
When we feel we have nothing left to give
And we are sure that the "song has ended"--
When our day seems over and the shadows fall
And the darkness of night has descended,
Where can we go to find the strength
To valiantly keep on trying,
Where can we find the hand that will dry
The tears that the heart is crying--
There's but one place to go and that is to God
And, dropping all pretense and pride,
We can pour out our problem without restraint
And gain strength with Him at our side--
And together we stand at life's crossroads
And view what we think is the end,
But God has a much bigger vision
And he tells us it's only a bend--
For the road goes on and is smoother,
And the "pause in the song" is a "rest,"
And the part that's unsung and unfinished
Is the sweetest and richest and best--
So rest and relax and grow stronger,
Let go and let God share your load,
Your work is not finished or ended,
You've just come to "a bend in the road."
Blessings of peace & all that is good.