On my walk this morning, six Amish buggies passed me, plus one pick up truck. Kind of cool to live in a place where horse-drawn traffic can outnumber gas-fueled vehicles.
The north country of NYS is home to a substantial Amish community, largely members of the Swartzentruber branch–the most traditional Amish people, a far-cry from the folks featured on sensationalist “Amish” cabel tv programs, and much more conservative than the better-known “Pennsylvania Dutch or Amish.”
My Amish neighbors are deeply connected to the land–operating family dairy or vegetable farms, and often supplementing their income with small sawmills or wood-working shops.
Lizzie, one of my closest Amish friends, makes quilts in the winter which she sells to a buyer somewhere downstate. Basket-makers are also busy in the cold months. I get this. I’m pretty bound by the land and the seasons myself. I crochet blankets in the winter–while I hardly pick up a crochet hook during the spring and summer months when I’m busy outside–and my hands are always dirty.