Amish Country, Here We Come!

the Tavern
We had such a great time in Gettysburg that I was almost sad to leave, but the excitement of getting to the Amish country had me in the car and ready to go before noon!

Since Lancaster, Pa. was less than two hours from Gettysburg, we were able to stop at Landis Valley Museum before checking into our hotel. The museum was actually much more like a small village than a museum and was a terrific way to spend ten bucks and the afternoon.

The weather was perfect, and walking around the "museum" was like taking a step back in time.
We saw a tin craftsman, a blacksmith, a gunsmith and a tavern keeper; they were all dressed in period clothing, of course, and they shared their knowledge of their craft in an entertaining fashion. The tavern gal was our favorite as she shared her kitchen secrets with us, which was right up Joe's alley.

the Tinsmith
Much of the property consisted of buildings which were moved to the property and preserved. I believe that there are twenty-one buildings that you can peruse, dated as far back as the 1700's; creating this museum was the Landis brother's dream to preserve the Pennsylvania (Dutch)German's heritage. Much of what you see here comes from their own personal collections.

We thoroughly enjoyed walking from building, to building, imagining life as it was, not all that long ago. How far we have come during the past 200 years!

We ended in the Mercantile, which was probably my favorite, as it was full of everything that I used to see when I watched "Little House on the Prairie!" I don't know why I love "old" things, but it must partly be the fact that my grandfather was an antique dealer and collector. I could have spent hours in the mercantile just looking at all of the old bottles, cans and other merchandise. The old coffee grinder was amazing! Someday I am going to find one in an antique shop, and drag it home.

Since we still had a few hours of daylight left, we decided to drive out to the country to "Bird in Hand" to see if we could find any Amish buggies driving along the road. I do not know why I find them so fascinating, but I was just dying to see these people, in their own environment, doing what they do every day.

We were not disappointed and Joe had an eagle eye when it came to spotting carriages. I just could not get enough of the horse-drawn buggies and plows. I could have sat at the crossroads, all day, and just observed their comings and goings. It was wild to watch them pull onto the road with cars flying past.

I tried my best to sneak a few photos, but those little buggies go SO fast! Besides, it felt a bit intrusive so most of the photos will be the ones in my mind, which, unfortunately, fade far too quickly.

We loved the rolling hills, stone houses, and big barns. Just driving around, out in the country was such a pleasure and we enjoyed every moment, and turn that we made. We even came upon an actual covered bridge. Not the easiest thing to cross, but very nostalgic and charming to look at.

At one point we passed a field, in the middle of town, and there were literally thousands of birds flying everywhere you looked; the name of the town was Bird in Hand. I guess that their "Bird in Hand" has multiplied, thousands of times over! It was quite the site to see.

I just loved driving around the Amish/Dutch Country and would have loved to have been able to be a fly in the buggy, for just one day.

Eventually, we checked in at our hotel and decided to get some dinner. With so much to see and do, and so much travelling here and there, we opted for comfort food. We ate at the Steamboat, which was a restaurant which looked like a steamboat, on dry land. I had pot roast; it was delicious. After a quick meal and a hot bath, it was jammie time! Phew! One tired girl here.

Were we stayed: Rodeway Inn Amish Country

Off to Rhode Island in the morning; Lancaster did not disappoint!

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apparently cows love pumpkins!


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