SUPERSTITIONS ON THE BAYOU
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Superstitions On The Bayou!
The people in the early days down here were very superstitious people. If the truth be known, many still believe in these superstitions even today. They believed in things like: Never sweep the house after dark, you would be sweeping a loved one out of your house. Don't ever open an umbrella in the house. It was bad luck for a black cat to cross your path. Don't sweep under a chair when someone is sitting in it. It was bad luck to spill salt. Don't dig in the ground on Good Friday- You're sure to strike blood.
It was good luck to have a cricket in the house. Eating cabbage on New Year's day would bring your prosperity.
If you dropped a dish towel, it meant company was coming.
If you dropped a fork, a man would come and visit. A spoon meant a woman would come.
Men would fire a gun into the air to bring on badly needed rain. When your nose itches it meant someone wanted to kiss you. When someone is sick and suffering, they would put a knife under that persons bed to cut the pain in half. Never look into a mirror on Good Friday until after 10:00am, you will see a dead person in it. If you would sprikle salt around your house it would keep evil spirits
away. Then there were the fearful unseen monsters of the day. The "Lu Tain" and the "Jean Jean". These stories were used to scare the children, and to keep them disciplined. There was also the "Roo-ga-roo" or werewolf. Back then everybody seen one. He would appear anytime, usually after
dark. He had long teeth and bulging eyes and snort like a bull.
Many people of old, saw him while coming home at night. The Roo-ga-roo hung out around a tree or bush. He was large and hairy and he'd just stand there, snorting. If you would kill it, it would turn into the person it took over.
How about the "Feu-fo-lee". This meant something absolutely horrible would happen..It was a like a ball of fire floating from out of the ground, bouncing on fence posts or playing with moss in the trees. Then it would come right at you. There's an old story of a man riding his horse at night below Madison Canal down here and he saw the
"Feu-fo-lee"....coming right at him. His horse stumbled and he fell to the ground. Instantly he was on his feet and running home and he got there before his horse! Many people back then and still today still believe in the power of the
"gris-gris". It was a jinx one could put on people. When someone you don't like or you wanted to get even with them you would put a "gris-gris". Usually that person would tie some feathers with a bright colored ribbon and put it in a path where you would walk. If you seen it, all you would have to say is "gris-gris passes a cote" or "gris-gris
fa-sa-sa" and the curse was broken! If you didn't see the "gris-gris", heaven help you! Another famous monster who "visited" this area was the "Letiche". Here down the Montegut area, it was referred as the "Luitian". Again, many
people still believe that this was the souls of unbaptized babies that swims the bayous, turning over pirogues, and braid horses manes. It was also known to be a very small person or elf who lifts the mosquito baires at night and rubs the person's hair while he or she is sleeping.