Tuesday, November 27, 2007

A Storied Land

Our need for supplies spills us into the northwestern Lousiana town of Natchitoches. It's a clean, middle class place with Northwestern State University and Fort St. John the Baptiste on the west bank of the Cane River. Cane River?

Without intending to, I've stumbled upon the location of one of my favorite books, "Cane River," written by Lalita Tademy. Tademy traces her African-American family tree through her mother line of slaves and free women from the Cane River area. (I read the sequel, too, "Red River." Not as noteworthy.)

While it's a modern-day town, I get quiet and reminisce about the way it was, the women in Tademy's family and the joys and sorrows they endured. It's one thing to learn the history of a town. It's another to experience it.

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