I'm fascinated by the Amish people. It amazes me that they have maintained their simple life style over the years, living and working with the modern world all around them. It's like going back in time to drive through the back roads and see farmers in their fields using horses and what we consider antique equipment, tilling the soil and harvesting their crops. I would lay in bed in the morning listening to the traffic going by and then suddenly you hear only the clop, clop of horses hooves.
I have no pictures of the Amish because they don't believe in having photographs taken. They consider humility to be a highly cherished value and view pride as a threat to community harmony. Because personal photographs can accentuate individuality and call attention to one's self, they are prohibited from their homes. They also believe that photographs in which they can be recognized violate the Biblical commandment, "Thou shalt not make unto thyself a graven immage." They want to be remembered by the lives they live, not how they look.
"Just as the Amish do not carry personal photographs or display them in homes, they do not want others to take photographs of them. Many visitors to Lancaster County, find it difficult not to do so. Yet, if there is one that appears to frustrate the Amish, it is tourists attempting to take their picture. Please follow our lead in taking no photographs in which faces are recognizable. Refraining from taking photos is more than just a courtesy; it's a respect for our Amish neighbors and their way of life."
Believe me, when you see those adorable children in their cute little dresses and bonnets and little straw hats, it's not easy to refrain from taking their picture. But I wanted to respect their beliefs so I refrained. It's apparent that a lot of people ignore their wishes because you can find a lot of pictures of them on the internet.
If you're lucky enough to visit this area you must eat at the Good 'N Plenty Restaurant. It's served family style at long tables and the food doesn't stop coming until you just can't eat another bite. Then they bring out several desserts you just have to have. This is not restaurant food; it's they kind of food you would find in your grandmother's kitchen. Old fashioned, home-cooked and delicious.
One of the most fun things about this area are the unique names of some of the towns. And the funny thing is, even in this area where religion is so important and the lifestyle so pure, many of them appear to have a sexual undertone, when in fact, they have nothing to do with sex at all. There's Intercourse, Virginville, Paradise, Bareville and Blue Ball. Blue Ball was actually named after the Blue Ball Hotel, not a sexual thing at all.
And as for Intercourse,
Of course, the local merchants take advantage of this to sell souvenirs.
We stayed in a beautiful, huge Victorian bed and breakfast inn called Greystone Manor in the village of Bird-in-Hand. Don't you love the name of this town? The inn is one of those places that is decorated in period furniture with beds so large you need a step stool to get in them. The gardens were gorgeous. The entire lawn is nothing but beautiful flowers and trees, ponds, paths and scattered around are iron bistro tables to sit at and admire your surroundings. Everywhere you look there's something beautiful to take a picture of.
Here's an Amish recipe from a cookbook I bought from an Amish farmer's wife. It's something the Amish are known for...