I read and blogged about a book that was given to me by my friend Cate, who told me that it reminded her of me (for no reason that I can fathom): Atchafalaya Houseboat: My years in the Louisiana Swamp. That was June 12, 2006. I can find it by searching the archives, but can't seem to link to it.
It was the story of Gwen Roland and Calvin Voisin, who, in the 1970's escaped "civilization" by building a houseboat on which they lived in the Louisiana Bayou for nearly ten years. They lived pretty much as our pioneer ancestors would have, catching and growing their food, trading for other goods.
One of the people they met then was C.C. Lockwood a wonderful nature photographer. He photographed Gwen and Calvin over those years. One of them was featured in National Geographic's 100 Best Pictures.
Now, thirty years later, Louisiana Public Broadcasting has produced a documentary about those days, as well as a retrospective view of the tim, hosted and narrated by Gwen Roland, the program features many of Lockwood's gorgeous photos of the swamp, evoking its beauty and making me yearn for such a life, surrounded by nature, sleeping when it's dark, working hard, eating well, sharing your life with animals and a afew Bayou denizens.
The show airs August 31 at 10:30 PM Eastern Time. I had the privilege to preview it. The sheer visual beauty of the setting and the photos is enough to make it must-see. Roland's commentary and her meeting with Voisin and Lockwood after thirty years is also compelling, as is her retrospective view of her life back then and the twists and turns it has taken since. Looking back is somewhat difficult for her, perhaps not the idyllic hindsight I'd have expected, but the reality we all experience looking closely at our pasts.
[Purchase CC Lockwood's book at buy.com]
[Image of Gwen Roland today from Fresh Fiction]