The Uninvited Guest

Nothing could strike fear into my childhood heart like the unexpected and undesired visit from The Uninvited Guest – or as we liked to call it – The UG.  We all acquired a sixth sense that alerted us to the approach of the UG.  As we played our fun little innocent childhood games without a care in the world, something unseen would hit us.  We would all stop at once as if in a trance and chant together in a whispered voice, “Hell – fire! will kill a bug, but nothing stops the bumply UG.”  We all knew what that warning meant.  My younger sister would start crying, so my oldest sister would swoop her up and run as we all scrambled to our favorite hiding places.

But it wasn’t just our family who responded in this way.  The neighborhood kids would scatter in all directions as they ran home to their parents.  Their moms would look out the window, spit out a silent curse in our direction, and withdraw while pulling the shades tight.  It’s like there was a small dark cloud that settled down over our little section of the street.

Yet for some strange reason, the adults in our family were in thrall to this creature.  They went so far as to even allow it to rub its slimy bumply lips on their vulnerable necks.  It still makes me shudder when I picture it. Once this bizarre ritual had been completed, they would go inside and things would settle down a bit.  Then one by one each of us kids would sneak back into the house to see what manner of evil was taking place.  Many times the UG would be ordering my parents around and demanding what kind of feast they were to prepare for its dinnertime.  Thankfully, none of us kids were on the menu for the whims of the vile creature.

Later on in the night as we tried to sleep, I would be overcome by a feeling of dread.  I just knew that something was prowling around our bedroom, hoping to fulfill its desire for an innocent’s blood.  As I lay in bed with my skin crawling with goose bumps – goose bumps, mind you, not bumply bumps, I felt a need to see what was going on.  When I forced myself to pry open one eye, I would see this huge dark hand on the ceiling coming down to get me.  I realized it was the shadow cast by the nightlight of a hand coming toward me.  And not just any hand – it had the bumply bumps of the bumply arms of that bumpfully bumpedy bumply UG.  As I stared in terror I heard it rasp in a gravelly whisper, “Hell – fire! will kill a bug, but nothing stops the bumply UG.”  At that, it turned around and headed out the door snickering its evil little bumply UG snicker.  The end.

 

I admit.  This is quite a bit different than my usual Throwback Thursday, but I was inspired!  When I say that all of my cousins on the Landry side will know what this story is about, I mean every single one of them!  And probably most of the other relatives on that side of the family.  This story was inspired by and dedicated to Therese Wynhoven Mouton, my dad’s first cousin on the Patureau side of the family.  But everyone knew her by her nickname “Tez.”

She was quite the character, though she was not the detestable creature that I write about in my story.  Like I said, she was just the inspiration.  She did show up at our house unannounced and uninvited, we did run away from her when she showed up trying to kiss everyone, she did like to tell people what to prepare for dinner or what to watch on TV, and she told us scary stories at night.  Oh, yeah, and she did have bumps all over her body.

1970 - Tez Mouton and Erie Patureau Landry travelling

Tez and Mee Maw traveling circa 1970

The poor creature!  She didn’t ask for those bumps and she probably didn’t have slimy lips.  She was just a lonely single woman who was trying to connect with family.  She was very independent too.  She was a school teacher, she enjoyed writing stories and poems, and she liked to travel.  But she also liked to scare little boys who probably gave her bumpy profile a hard stare.  As she brought that shadowy hand down on me from the ceiling, she didn’t say anything about a bumply UG,  she was reading a poem by James Whitcomb Riley, “…and the goblins gonna get you if you don’t watch out.”  And that’s why I’ve been such a good boy ever since!

23 comments

  • Tricia Duffy Rauser
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    Van!

  • Denise Arendt-Duke
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    She would come visit Aunt Pinkie in Lafayette too. We were little and a little afraid.

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    Cousin wart

  • Tricia Duffy Rauser
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    Gregory!

  • Tricia Duffy Rauser
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    Actually Van….it was a great story! And I have a few myself!

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    She was not scary! She was different. I remember her coming down the stairs at Memaw’s house wearing a red kimono. I probably was her favorite, lol.

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    She was known in our house as Cousin Wart! When she came Cashmere Bouquet filled the upstairs. And she always put one of us outta our rooms. She would make us soooooo mad. She was extremely weird Shirley Shaw and Tricia sorry but we were scared of her! the last time she came to our house she had too much wine and backed into the tree in our front yard. she was so bossy and…bumpy!

  • Jamie Landry Perry
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    All I remember are the bumps, the kissing and the hand over the lamp with that wonderful poem she told so perfectly! (Referring to Little Orphant Annie by James Whitcomb Riley)

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    When she went to MeMaw’s house she would listen to opera. It was so loud you couldn’t hear anything else. She loved Memaw and Memaw loved her.

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    Do you have the story from the National Enquirer?

  • Van

    So many stories to tell. I didn’t want the post any longer than it already was, but I was tempted to make that part of the story. I may have to expand it a bit. How is this:

    There were even rumors that the bumply UG had died and come back to life. It was then that we knew that we would never be able to escape from the bumpy clutches of the bumply UG.

    ***For those of you who do not know the entire story of Tez, she claimed to have had an out of body experience one time. The story ended up as an article in the well known National Enquirer. She stated that she went to heaven and Jesus told her he was not ready for her yet. My mom said that this story cheered her up a bit. She never felt like she was ready for any of Tez’s visits!

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    Van. Hope you don’t get a visit from Tez tonight in your sleep.

  • Phyllis Bennett
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    I was concerned Tez’ ” bumps” until mom told he she had contracted a noncontagious disease overseas (von rickenhouse). In spite of Tez’ lack of social skills, I was fascinated with her as a child. She was well educated, well traveled, energetic, eccentric, opinionated, and unapologetic. I had never met anyone like her and was thoroughly entertained by her stories and antics. One summer Jodie and I spent a few days with her and another summer I think Tricia and I spent some time with her is Duson. I wouldn’t trade those memories and laughs for anything. She was definitely one of a kind!

    • Van

      Thanks for that info. I checked up on Von Recklinghausen’s disease. Now known as neurofibromatosis type I. It is caused by a gene mutation, so you can’t catch it and neither did she. “An exotic foreign disease that she could catch but not pass on.” So much misinformation about those bumps. I bet she perpetuated those wild stories herself! That’s why I have her chanting the last line of the story and walking off with a laugh.

  • Therese Daigre Barker
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    When she came to our house in Plaquemine, La, even our cat hid for days ( under the couch I think ). Now that I am an adult, I would love to sit down and talk with her!

  • Daphne Winn Morton
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    I remember that she would always talk with an imaginary person as if someone were carrying on a conversation with her but no one was there.

    MeeMaw loved to travel and Tez is the only one who had the time to travel with her. However, she would make MeeMaw outdone when she made a gumbo, and Tez would serve up her plate first, and scoop up almost every shrimp in the pot, and leave none for anyone else. I think she lived in a dream world and was totally oblivious to everyone else’s reaction.

  • Vicky Joslin Goss
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    OMG! I remember her for sure. This has been a very entertaining post. Hope my side of the Landrys enjoyed this as much as I did.

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    Talk about bring back memories. I call UG Minnie the Moocher because that’s what she was. She’d come to Mama’s unannounced and wanted to be waited on. One morning I was visiting Mama and she was sitting in the kitchen in a rocking chair like a queen. Well it was lunch time and she told mama to make her a sandwich and bring it to her in the living room so she could eat her lunch while she watched her soap operas. Well I came unglued. I said “mama don’t you dare make that sandwich.” I turned to the Moocher and said “you get up and make your own sandwich.” Another time my brother Robert called and said Teresa had called and was going visit a friend in Calif. I warned him. I said Robert “she’s going visit a friend but she’s having plans to hunker down at your house. Well sure enough, 11 days later he call me and said Pinkie you were right. Every night while was there she invited this priest to come to supper at their house. I hate to act so ugly but that how she effected people. When she would come and take advantage of Mama I had it. Then when Sseburn and I lived in Lafayette she did invite us for barbecue ox tail . As you can see I spelt my husband now wrong I’m so flustered. Don’t get me wrong, we did have some good chats but I wanted to put my 2 cents, when she visited at my house one day when my daughter was 3 she kept starring at her face and Asked her what all those bumps were on her face and arms. she said well come here and I’ll tell what they are, She let Beth feel them and explained in detail all about them. Beth was so interested about it all that really. Made her happy. Well I’m glad it ended on a Good note. But y’all know that’s how she was.. Believe it or not I feel a little guilty. But I plan to go to confession Tomorrow. Thanks for all your interesting write ups. We wait for them. Pinkie Chaumont

  • Tricia Duffy Rauser
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    I remember one time Mom was coming home from shopping and when returning on the street she saw Tez’s car and high tailed it to Germaine’s where she waited until she thought the “coast was clear”!

  • Daphne Winn Morton
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    Yes. And if one sister saw that she called, she would call the other sisters to warn them not to answer the phone because she usually wanted to come stay for a few days

  • Tricia Duffy Rauser
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    Oh Lort. Sorry Wana for telling on you

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    Ha ha, you are referring to Terese Mouton, right? Van, I’m literally ROLLING ON THE FLOOR HERE! Oh yeah she was kooky alright. It happened to us. Of course that was my mom’s cousin too. I don’t like to say negative things about people but I have a few stories about her. She used to invite herself to our house a few times a year! My mom could never say no. And my mom being the nice and sweet person she was, would wait on her hand and foot, and Terese, never offering much as far as help or even to take her out and buy her a lunch or something. Every time she visited, she was off right away to visit a ‘priest friend” or so she told us. She was okay to me I guess, but just not very friendly. But one time she swatted my cat off the kitchen chair so she could sit there. I got pissed and told her, “don’t you ever do that again!”. It shocked my mom but it didn’t phase Terese. I think I was about 15. Funny.

    It sounds like you had similar experiences! My dad will get a kick out of this when I tell him. LMAO:-D!!!

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    I am sitting here laughing out loud. We are all so funny! Tez was a trip but one none of us wanted to go on again!!!!!!!! Good Lord forgive us!!!!!! Lol!!!!!

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