Tag Archives: pennsylvania dutch country

So These Two Amish Guys Walk into a Bar …

So These Two Amish Guys Walk into a Bar …

No. I’m just messing with you.

Here are some pictures I took while I was in Lancaster County, PA last weekend.

The Amish are cool, but they’re also American which means they love money. I wasn’t charged by any of them for taking these photos, but they know the horse & buggy thing is a good shtick as it keeps us coming back and being all misty-eyed about them and of course, swerving our massive vehicles out of the way of the heaping piles of horse poop which is plentiful on those roads.

I hope you enjoy… I had a nice time off the grid. The next post I write about the auction, I’ll show you what I actually “won” and talk about the rush of adrenaline you get when you start bidding… it’s sorta CRAZY.

I love this shot; these are the teenage girls or young mothers at the auction. The white bonnet (I call it an English muffin) connotes marriage. The girls without the bonnet are unmarried.
I try not to capture anyone’s eyes, as I believe they are windows to the soul, and so when it comes to people who are unaware of what I’m doing, I endeavor to show respect.

Clearly they were captivated by whatever was going on. I just don’t know what. The constant hairstyle that the women must wear: the twisting of the hair from the forehead, along the temples and into a bun in the back, is a lifelong ‘do. Over time, its unrelenting, repeated tugs and pulls on the roots do damage to the follicle and which eventually kill the regrowth. It’s a bummer.

This little guy. I loved watching him. He was so sweet and real. He was looking at some toys at the auction. All the boys wear those straw hats starting at a very young age – I think as soon as their hair starts to grow longer than one inch. They wear the hats into adulthood. My kids wouldn’t put up with that hat wearin’ bidness… I wonder how they do it. The children all seem content and cheerful, not abused or sullen.

They cook tons of chicken all day at these events and it’s quite the ordeal. Clearly this guy got away with not wearing his hat. Along with this, they sell homemade fresh-churned ice cream, pretzels and whoopie pies. Never had a whoopie pie? You haven’t lived.

Ironic isn’t it? A horse-drawn tiller alongside a row of massive power towers. I took this pic from the window of a moving vehicle and I have to say I like the effect in the foreground: movement and energy. Sometimes I have to agree: The Amish are on to something.

The mothers are constantly after the children at these events. This isn’t a great picture of this woman, I couldn’t get a really good one, but she was STUNNING in comparison to a lot of the other Amish women I saw at this event. Her dark features and muscle tone were unlike any other woman’s there. (And she clearly plucks her eyebrows… that must’ve been what caught me off guard… and now that I scrutinize it further, it looks like her hair is slightly parted on the side and NOT twisted! She must be an import from Wisconsin or something.)

This “Vanna White” of the Amish auction is part of the younger set and he’s learning the ropes from his elders at the live plant auction. You can get a 10′ magnolia grandiflora for $50.

And occasionally you see the local “English” (non-Amish) people mingle with the Amish. The funny thing is: I’ve seen an Amish man on an iPhone, but he doesn’t own it. I’ve seen one in a car, but he doesn’t drive or own it. The lines, it seems, become increasingly blurred on what constitutes English living…

So sweet. These two were nuzzling in the morning chill. I couldn’t help myself. PULL OVER! I shouted at RICK!. She complied.

You could buy a box of peppers. Probably cost you $2 for all of these.

Yes, they are chickens. Just hanging out. B-b-b-bcaaaw! b-CAAAW! They escaped the barbecue.

This is a typical Amish farm. They span for acres and they grow everything from tobacco to peanuts. When a family member gets married, they just build an addition and the newlyweds move in with the family. I’m unclear on who goes where…

I hope this post and these photos inspire you to relax this weekend if you can. Unplug, sit back, read a book, listen to some music and breathe.

Thank you for sticking around… Truly.

Tuesday Morning Press


Welcome to a new feature that might make it for more than one installation.

It’s the Tuesday Morning Press wherein I write nonstop (lucky you) between returning from walking the kids to school and getting ready to be late for yoga.

Some recent developments:

1) I went to Pennsylvania Dutch country this last weekend with my good friend RICK! and her sons along with Thing 1. He is 14. Soon I will just call him the 14-old-old because I’m lazy. Yes, I see the irony about typing more letters to save chaos. I’m also very conflicted about this decision so maybe I’ll just let it ride out and see how it goes. Back to the trip. We try to go every October because they have this awesome auction held by a local Amish contingent and I like to buy other peoples’ castaways. I have a nice collection of random brass-like things from auctions in years past. I’ll take a picture you can ignore in a couple days.

Per that trip, I intended to take pictures of the experience. I did bring my nice camera, but not the right lens, so what I’ll do is lie to you and tell you that the pictures I took are from my most recent trip. The thing is, it’s not like the Amish are up to anything new; they didn’t break out in a flash mob of silence and piety (well, maybe they did and I didn’t notice because it’s how they are anyway) so the pictures I took are really quite pleasant and HEY, I’m NOT harshing on the Amish. I dig them. I just wish they’d shower more often than they do and make up their minds about the whole fake mother-of-pearl snaps instead of buttons thing on their shirts — several of which I found to be rather flaaashy.

Auction score though: I got a brand new 20′ aluminum, Werner brand, Made in China extension ladder for $70. Holla! And some massive pumpkins for cheap. Here’s a pic of one:

this pumpkin is so big i couldn’t fit it in the camera.

One year, the pumpkin was pecked at by squirrels. This year, I’m gonna come up with some sort of hot pepper glaze to put on it so the bastards leave it alone. If any of you guys have advice for me in that arena, I’d appreciate it. I’d ask the Amish, but they pretend to not understand anything I say that doesn’t involve my giving them my cash. I AM NOT KIDDING. Look, the lady at the local Target up there told me all sorts of stuff about what they buy from her. Trust me: it’s not just black shoes and charcoal briquets.

2) I am joining a multi-author blog called “Peevish Penman.” I posted an interview I wrote and asked interview-y questions of Rob Hines, another aspiring writer who’s far less confused than I am. Check out the interview at this link highlighted right here. According to the schedule, my interview (the one wherein I answer the questions) posts next week and you’ll find I’m my usual loquacious, candid and distracted self. I’ll let you know when that posts. So that’s big news for me… I like the idea of broadening my aspect ratio.

3) There is no third item.

4) I’m planning to write another book for NaNoWriMo next month, so prepare yourself for some randomness from me as I spout off everything I’m not allowed to put in my so-called book. What happened to the last one? Oh… nothing. That’s part of the problem. I hereby pledge to completely and utterly immerse myself in the upcoming project to ensure that I continue to totally ignore the first one. I want to get back to the first one. I do. It’s just that I’m … well, afraid. It has good bones, I just need to figure out what to do with it. But that’s not your problem. It’s mine.

5) I’m starting something on Thursdays too (watch it not happen this week): sort of a throw back post. Many of you who follow me on WordPress are new to my content and there are other posts I wrote when I was on Blogspot. I will re-post some of those writings if it makes sense. If nothing shows up on a Thursday you can count on one of the several scenarios: I’ve run off to Vegas to fulfill my life-long dream of being in a yet-to-be-formed band of vaudevillian unicyclists; I completely forgot about the plan to post old stuff; or, yeah… one of those two. I’d put my money on the latter if I were you.

Well, it’s time to go and distract myself with something else before I push out for yoga. The weather is a crisp 44˚ and partly sunny right now, so going on the water for a row … is just not … appealing for me, although I do want to snap some pics of the foliage from the river; it’s beautiful.

Thank you.

ps – oh yes! 3) I knew there was a third item! I posted my first guest blog … thing yesterday at Good Geek Ranting! Check it out at http://goodgeekranting.wordpress.com/2012/10/08/miss-molly-whats-in-a-name-and-the-new-drivers-license/ that title in and of itself is appealing. You know it…