My kids and I were listening to the Zydeco masterpiece Give Him Cornbread by Beau Jocque on the way to school. It’s a song about, you guessed, cornbread. At some point, he shouts “Couche-couche!” which is cornbread left over from the night before sort of mushed into milk and eaten for breakfast. I have distinct fourth-grade cafeteria memories of the boys making a huge mess on their trays pouring milk over their cornbread and mashing it up.
AG pops up from the back and responds “I love couscous!”
A#1- At eight years old, hell, at eighteen years old, I had no idea what couscous was.
B#2- And I’m proud that she loves food in the way I do.
C#3- But I surely knew about couche-couche.
D#4- And it makes me very sad that the kids are disconnected from my Cajun heritage, my people.
Does every parent who leaves their childhood home feel this struggle? I love Acadiana. I love the people, the food, the music. I get goosebumps when I hear Edwin Edwards talk.
My kids have already had a broader life than I did growing up there. They’re exposed to so many different cultures, ways of life, ethnic foods, and therefore, more of the real world.
Some might say I over-romanticize. But I miss home. And I don’t get back often enough. So this weekend, if only for twenty-four hours, we will push off some of our commitments and head west on I-10.
And learn about couche-couche.