The People in the Book*

My memoir covers the late 1960s through mid-1970s and focuses on the siblings who are closest to my age: Gilda, Glenda, and Dickie, and me, of course (well, a memoir is like that). In between chores at our family’s motel, the four of us did a lot of game-playing, and for a few years, the most frequent pass-time was Canasta, a game of which could go on and on, and therefore, amuse us, keep us out of the heat, and out of trouble, for days. Everyone else in the family at the time – Momma, Daddy, Mémère, Cassie, Andy, Scotty, and Alisa – all have parts to play as well, some more than others (Scotty and Alisa were tiny tots).

The photo below shows my siblings and me at a family wedding in Church Point, Louisiana, in 2013. (Marriage of Kimberly Kleiser, Glenda’s daughter, to Chris Elliott).

Ardoin Siblings: Alisa, Cassie, Gilda, Glenda, Dickie, Andy. Kneeling: Morris, Scotty. Photo by:

Here’s Momma and Daddy’s wedding portrait, and below that, Mémère and Pépère’s:

Eliza Mae Thompson married Joseph Zanny Ardoin in Ville Platte, Louisiana, September 8, 1951.
Ortense & DeJean
Ortense Thompson and DeJean Thompson, on their Wedding Day, 1921, Ville Platte, Louisiana. (They were second cousins, hence the same surname.)


*By “the book,” I mean “Stone Motel – Memoirs of a Cajun Boy,” slated for publication by the University Press of Mississippi in 2020. For more stories on my formative years in Louisiana, and my current life in New York, as well as all the recipes of food mentioned in “Stone Motel,” please FOLLOW me! (form is at the bottom of this page)


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