Google Places and Platypie

 Venice, Louisiana
“The End of the World”

April 1, 2011

As part of our continuing ambition to drive the coast of the United States, we headed south out of New Orleans last week and drove down State Road 23 to what was, before Hurricane Katrina, the town of Venice, Louisiana. Eighty three miles south of NOLA1, Venice touts itself as the End of the World and it is.

Route 23 runs beside the west bank of the Mississippi river. and all along the way big oil-tankers can be seen just over the levee gliding along beside the road. The further down the river we traveled towards The Delta the more refineries, pumping stations, resource management sites, midstream energy companies, and gas and oil wells we saw. 

Fighting hard to survive amidst all the heavy industry are beautiful bayous, marvelous birds and friendly hard working people.

We have been boondocking2 in the parking lot of the rebuilding Venice Marina and Crawgator’s Bar for almost a week now. Twenty-four hours a day we listen to the laughter of the gulls,  the growly grunts of alligators, the shallow barking  of the Yellow-Crowned NIght Herons and the whomp, whomp, whomp of helicopters ferrying workers back and forth to the oil drilling platforms in the Gulf of Mexico.

This entire area around where we are parked was totally destroyed by Katrina. Everyone lost everything. A few years after the hurricane, The Deepwater Horizon explosion happened just 50 miles off shore from the former town. President Obama visited the response/staging area here last May and vowed BP would pay for everything. BP has hired some of the residents to help with the clean up but not nearly enough. ”All that clean up work...we could have used the money but they never called us.”

Outside our window on one side there is a beautiful cyprus swamp and a mile or so across the water is a refining plant that stretches from horizon to horizon. At night stacks in the facility emit flaming orange pillars of burning gas. On the other side of our camper is the sports fishing marina, beyond that the shrimp fleet and several fish and shrimp processing plants. It’s quite a mixed view.  (Prevailing wind has been in our favor ALMOST all the time).

Walking every morning around the the docks and processing plants, watching out for the large Mama Alligators, we can track fishing osprey and  Common Moorhens with our binoculars while also sighting crushed refrigerators, submerged trucks, piles of rebar, wrecked boats, TV sets, furniture and tires sinking in the swamp. FEMA housing and trailers are still everywhere although few people are still living in them. Most have moved away or rebuilt. The younger people we have been talking to want to stay, but there is just no work for them.

We are enjoying the shrimpers and security people who work nights. It’s kinda funny to see them walking and driving around at 8 in the morning having a beer after work. We do enjoy fitting in...

Boondocking at "The End of the World"

Map Instructions: You may think this is just a Google map, but there is ever-so much more to be found. Click on each icon for a layered  presentation of our photos and comments, suggested sites, camping locations, and even some historical or pop-culture references. This map features the location of the Deep-Water Horizon, where Katrina made landfall and where we boondocked. 

1. NOLA: New Orleans, Louisiana

2. Boondocking: Camping with no electric, water or sewage hook-up. With our solar panels, bank of six batteries, fresh water, gray water and black water storage tanks we can boondock for about a week. That is if the sun shines... We also have a generator.


Hey - Peggy is a wonderful writer! She should write a book! Really!

Anne P

Please continue to do the blogs, you never know what may come of it! If it means anything, it is inspiring to one little soul back here in Atlanta. 

Mackenzie Morgan

You guys are living the dream!  Love the periodic updates, so be sure to keep 'em coming. Be safe out there.  Hopefully we link up again in the near future.


Do those Oysters have the BP flavor ?


I remember driving through the Southern states, and also spending some time on Padre Islant in Texas, and all you could eat was fried food, except the shrimp we bought home and boiled with all the spices. What a relief


Never will we get sick of fried oysters...

Why is the Biloxi State Wildlife Area in Louisiana?
And do seagulls really laugh?
If so, what's so funny?