Wednesday, August 04, 2010

A New Orleans memory

While living in Mid City area, my place to gas up was the filling station on Esplanade Avenue, right on Bayou St. John.
One day, a brown Rolls Royce pulled to the opposite pump. A dapper man got out and proceeded to fill his tank. And of course, my big mouth had to say something.
"That's a good way to stay humble . . . pump your own gas."
The matching brown colored man smiled and laughed.
"That's about right," he said.
As I drove away, I read his vanity license plate. PIANO
photo by NoVARon
Holy crap, I just smart-assed Allen Toussaint, famed musician, songwriter and a favorite New Orleans son!

In the months and years ahead, we often found ourselves at the same gas pumps and trading hellos. He'd ask if I lived in the neighborhood and I would point across the bayou to Moss Street. I would ask if he enjoyed the recent Jazz Fest.
After I moved from New Orleans to live in Houston for a year and a half, I returned to my favorite Mid City neighborhood and found myself at the Esplanade Shell once again. And who pulls up to the pump but Mr. Toussaint! I was happy to see my famous gas station acquaintance.
"Haven't seen you in awhile. Where've you been?" he asked.

Gotta love that.

Be sure to catch Austin City Limits featuring Allen Toussaint, full episode HERE. Watch his post-Rita thoughts at the end of the show.


Kimberly said...

When Jimmy Buffett was on the Gulf Coast a couple of weeks ago Allen Toussaint was one of his special guests by way of New Orleans of course....he played the entire concert.

Teresa Evangeline said...

Man, he is one cool jazzmeister. This is the second time in a week that he's come up. After almost never coming into my thought or seeing anything. Maybe I'm just paying more attention, but still. Mmmmm. Funny how that happens...

SkitzoLeezra said...

Kim - did you go to the concert? I thought you were locked out of the ticket giveaway.
Teresa - I was reminded of Mr. Toussaint when TiVo recorded his appearance on Austin City Limits (PBS). Be sure to catch it.

Kittie Howard said...

What a great NO story that, I think, could only happen in NO. Warms my heart!

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