"I was somewhere between Raceland and Thibodaux, six years back, when I spotted my third alligator on the shoulder of Highway 90, the alternative route headed west out of New Orleans. At that time, I hadn’t driven this road in well over a decade, but as I wrenched the car into the left lane, I made up my mind to revisit the highway at least once per year, preferably in late summer to early fall, when the average temperature in South Louisiana falls to the mid-90s and those imposing lizards come crawling out of their swamps and jungly environs to sun themselves on the steaming pavement. If the proverbial road to hell is paved with good intentions, the way down 90 is cracked, potholed, and teeming at times with moving speed bumps that challenge drivers to a game of life-or-death Frogger."

To read more click on Scott Daniel Ellison's painting "Thaw" that accompanied the piece in the Summer 2016 issue of The Oxford American