My trip last week to the St. Francisville area failed to accomplish its principal purpose. Planning aimed at transporting a local veteran home to Houma had not taken into account all the complications of relocating a bed-ridden patient. To avoid future disappointments, I will ask far more questions.
It was a "flying" trip, through that nasty, rainy weather a few days before the same system snowed on us. I drove via La. 308 to the Sunshine Bridge, then via Interstate 10 and Interstate 110 to U.S. 61. Narrow La. 10 completed the route. My late brother David once lived along La. 10, and we visited often, but that was at least 20 years ago, and the region east of St. Francisville has changed vastly.
Weather: It rained all the way up and most of the way back. Traffic was tolerable, except on the interstate, where speeds of 60 and up generated clouds of road spray that made it nearly impossible to see the other traffic clearly.
Skinny two-lane La. 10, with minimal traffic, was far easier to navigate.
After establishing that completing the mission as planned would be impossible, unwise, I chose an alternate return route, avoiding the interstate entirely by taking U.S. 190 across Baton Rouge's Huey P. Long bridge, then La. 1 to Thibodaux.
There were far more traffic lights and city streets, but driving was not nearly so tense, and if anything, the route was quicker. Round trip, about 250 miles.
Dome home? Years ago, before improvements to U.S. 90 West made it the favored route to northern Louisiana, we drove La. 1 often, passing, somewhere between Thibodaux and Napoleonville, an unusual residence, a geodesic dome home, in the style of Buckminster Fuller. I did not see it this trip. Was I distracted by driving, or has it disappeared forever?
If you know the story on the futuristic "dome home," call or write.
HTMPO TAC and SCRSC: The planning groups whose names are longer than their meetings will, reports Joshua Manning, join forces this week to address roadway issues.
The Houma Thibodaux Municipal Planning Organization Technical Advisory Committee and the South Central Regional Transportation Safety Plan Infrastructure and Operations Subcommittee will meet at 10 a.m. Thursday at the South Central Planning and Development Commission, 5058 West Main Street, Houma.
Attendees, generally employees of the state Department of Transportation and Development, local government, planning and law enforcement agencies, will discuss roadway and safety projects taking place in this Region.
Despite their cumbersome names and acronyms, the groups serve as clearing houses for reports, updates and complications arising out of programs, projects and regulations involved in making local transportation work. I attended a similar joint session earlier this year and found it instructive.
The Technical Advisory Committee will meet promptly at 10 a.m., with the SCRTSP subcommittee meeting following at 11. Lunch will be provided at noon. Visit htmpo.org for documents pertaining to the meeting.
Coming: The Houma-Terrebonne Community Band performs at 6:30 p.m. Saturday. The show will include familiar Christmas music and takes place at Houma Christian School, 109 Valhi Blvd., Houma. The band has a separate performance of sacred Christmas music at 2 p.m. Sunday at St. Francis de Sales Cathedral, Houma.
Round Table: Nicholls professors Paul Wilson, Kurt Stiegler and Steve Michot will discuss the Vietnam War at 6 p.m. Dec. 19 at the Terrebonne Main Library in Houma. The event is sponsored monthly by the Regional Military Museum. It's free and open to the public.
Keep me posted: I can help publicize non-profit community events. To appear in Sunday columns, get the information to me by Thursday night. For Wednesdays, by Sunday night. It's firstname.lastname@example.org, or 381-6256.
Responding? Contact Bill Ellzey at 381-6256, at email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, or c/o The Courier, P.O. Box 2717, Houma, LA 70361.