My friend Marie, who did such an excellent job with the layout and editing of Fifty-two Tuesdays recently worked her magic again on one of my publishing attempts. When I asked her fee, she replied, “consider it part of the original fee you paid me.” I said, “oh, it’s lagniappe.”
The subsequent discussion led me to pull Celestine Sibley’s book, Small Blessings, off the shelf and reread some of her delightful columns. Included in this volume is the one where she introduced me to lagniappe.
As I read this treasured volume from my library, I realized that if Celestine were writing today, she would be one of my favorite bloggers. Her personal stories have touched me for probably more than fifty years.
I have at least one copy of all Celestine’s books, have given many as gifts, and reread portions of them often. As a young girl, I looked forward to reading her column in the magazine section of the Atlanta Journal and Constitution on Sundays. I got directions to her log cabin near Crabapple, GA from relatives who lived there and begged my Daddy to drive me by the house when we were near there attending a family gathering. He did.
What an impression that woman and her writing made on me. On Mother’s Day weekend circa 1995, my daughter and I went to meet Celestine and hear a lecture – a treasured day for me.
Isn’t it funny how one conversation leads to an word you haven’t heard or used in a while, then that leads to more memories of where you first heard the word, then to other associations with that person and others who share the story (our New Orleans’ friends are well acquainted with lagniappe), and you fall down an enchanted rabbit hole of memories?
Celestine’s definition of lagniappe is a “little something extra”. Wikipedia says about the same thing. Today’s photo of my first clematis bloom is your lagniappe.