“French Louie” Seymour, our very own hermit, has several places to lay his head. Most of them offer Louie some shelter from the wind and rain. This one meets those requirements but does not hold heat. Louie kept a fire going inside this cave when he was there; even in the summer. Maybe it kept the black flies away.
I have no idea if Louie can read or write. I do know that as of the last time I visited him he didn’t leave any hen scratching on the walls of the cave.
Even though Louie and his Indian friend John Leaf have a lot of opposite ideas Louie is good to John. John seems to get sick quite often and when it happens he usually doesn’t seem to be near shelter. I know Louie took him in at the slab shanty a few times. He let John rest and fed him until he was healthy.
One time when I was near Louie’s cave I stopped to visit. Louie was not there but John Leaf was. John was very ill again. Louie had allowed him to stay and even left some food behind for John. That was why everyone liked Louie; he was a kind soul.
For as sickly as John Leaf was, it is really ironic the way he died.
John was not quite the kind soul that Louie was. John was always prepared to be offended about anything so slight. Once offended, John would not back down. So most of us learned that when John was offended and his pride was hurt, then a fight was about to start. The other party had to back down or get in a brawl with John.
Everyone around here knew that. So when someone backed down from John Leaf it was understood that the party backing down was not afraid of John, it was because – – – well – – – John was John and nothing was going to change him.
Strangers did not know that. John never mixed with city folks so that did not present a problem. However, there were a lot of new loggers in these woods who did not know John and his temperament.
The last time anyone saw John was when a pair of calked and spiked logger’s boots did a jig on his chest and head. John Leaf died.
No one ever knew, or admitted to know, who was inside those boots.