Thursday, June 9

A Drive Through Pennsylvania Dutch Country

With temperatures reaching nearly 100° for the second day, J and I jumped in the car to get out of the air-conditioned house for a while. A short 45-minute drive west delivers us to a world that seems to have been frozen in time 100 years ago -- Pennsylvania Dutch country.
But, wait. This farmer is pulling something behind his team that looks like it could just as easily be pulled by a modern John Deere tractor.

In fact, it most likely was built to be pulled by a tractor and was adapted to be pulled by his horses.
This generation of Amish have negotiated a way to incorporate aspects of the modern world without overstepping the ethical boundaries of their faith. There are quite a few Amish enterprises selling quilts, wooden yard furniture, produce and crafts to tourists in the Lancaster area -- but never on a Sunday.

Several years ago, my roof was replaced by an Amish roofer who went home to a house with no electricity at the end of the day. When I developed a leak after a strong storm several months later, he came out on a Saturday, removed a large section of roof, only to find it dry beneath. He discovered that the leak was, in fact, caused by hairline cracks in my stucco and a driving rain. He replaced the roof he had removed, sealed every inch of my stucco, and wouldn't accept a dime for his time. I haven't had a problem since.
Did I mention it was nearly 100° today?

By the way, I did ask before taking this man's photos. It's the polite thing to do.

19 comments:

  1. Lovely photos and I am so glad you asked him before taking them. Many people do not and don't understand that they are sensitive about it.

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  2. It's hard to believe that a piece of equipment, like that semi-automated plow, can be used so effectively by a five-horsepower pulling device. The horses were magnificent, and almost intuitive in the tightness of their turns. The lighting in the picture is interesting too, as a thunderstorm was about to break. There was something "Ahab-ish" in the figure of this farmer, connected to the horses by leather straps, standing up-right in the increasing wind and the lightning high in the grey clouds above.

    Can we ride up to Hawk's Nest on Sunday?

    Sincerely,
    The "J" writing from the office attached to your kitchen...

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  3. My heart goes out to the horses. We have that same heat down here in Maryland as well as house guests from SF. They are astonished!

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  4. I couldn't live without my electricity and technology, but I do find reasons to go old fashioned on many ways. Great photos, what incongruity of modern machine and those lovely draft horses. xox Corrine

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  5. Hi Leslie who knows northern new mexico :* )
    ... did i mention we haven't seen rain in a
    long long, very long time? even the desert cactus are
    brown.
    your photography is breath taking. feels like I
    could slowly, gently reach out and touch those hard
    working horses...........
    thank you!

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  6. What a lovely record of your drive. Almost makes me wish I could have come along. Almost. The temperature would have made me stay behind and miss this!

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  7. What beautiful pictures. Just looking at them creates a feeling of calm. Did you ever read "Everyday Sacred" by Sue Bender? Just love that book, maybe I'll revisit after seeing your post.

    Karen

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  8. Leslie, I've always been fascinated by the Amish and Quakers and Anabaptist communities. I love these photos.

    We're having June Gloom.

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  9. I just wish you had a picture of that roofer!

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  10. These photos remind me of the timeless nature of Dutch Country. I am immediately brought back to the time I lived in PA and saw first hand the Amish working the earth with hand and plow. I miss the richness of the green of PA, but I certainly do not miss the humidity! Best wishes with your two new blogs.

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  11. I so enjoyed these photos! I grew up about 30 minutes away from "Dutch Country" or Lancaster, Pa. I went to college in Millersville, so these gorgeous photos brought back many a memory!

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  12. The man who fixed your roof is a gem!
    Fab photographs, Leslie!

    xox
    Constance

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  13. Your photographs of the horses and farmer are amazing, they tell a story of their own, so clean and strong and proud. I hope it has cooled off for you. We are finally having a beautiful spring, ( but it is actually my summer!) roxanne

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  14. I've always thought it very romantic,
    this area, thanks for the little tour,and for popping by to remind me

    of you.
    Gorgeous pics yourself, and gorgeous manners..I wonder if the horses minded having their shots taken,they look so focussed.

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  15. Just wanted to say hi there! I hope you are well. It's v. hot here right now.
    xox

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  16. Your photos are so amazing. I really enjoyed looking at them.

    Love you, Leslie.

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  17. Leslie,
    Love this post! Pennsylvania Dutch country looks beautiful.

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  18. Years before it became real touristy (witness) I used to spend they days off buying quilting fabrics in Inetercourse and bird in hand. Lovely area and amazing folks there,great photos Leslie!

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  19. I was in Pennsylvania two years ago and i was impressed. Unfortunately i had no time to visit around it very well because i was there for only two days, but i hope to visit it again very soon. I recommend this place, it is very nice.

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