October 26, 2019 Lancaster, PA.

Are We Having Fun Yet?

I arrived in the  Lancaster area Tuesday, looking forward to revisiting the area and the Amish culture I find so fascinating. I was a little surprised to find the campground I stayed at the last time I was here, all but fully reserved for the weekend. I really did think the crowds thinned out a bit post Columbus Day.

View out the passenger side window

Not so, it turns out. Out of over 100 sites, I was offered a choice of two that were not yet filled for the weekend.

View out the front windshield

Now this is camping at it’s finest! Aw, the glory of beautiful sunrises, the scent of pines, the wonder of the wide open spaces, yes, all but a true wilderness experience.

View out the driver’s side window

I guess I need to return back out west, this type of “camping” is certainly not for me. And did I mention that this wonderful secluded site goes for just a little under $50 a night. Now where can you find a deal like that?

Amish Images

I really have been struggling to get inspired to take any photos of this unique landscape. The narrow backroads through Amish country have absolutely no shoulders so there is all but no place one can pull off and get out to take a shot. Years ago, when I was last here, I could more easily get photos since, at that time, I towed a trailer with a motorcycle inside, not a car as I now do. With the bike I could get off the road despite the lack of a shoulder.

Add to that, the greatly increased car traffic on these back roads and the apparent need to rush to wherever they are going, tailgating like crazy, and there being no shoulders to pull over on, one has no choice but to bomb through the countryside at 50-60 mph, not exactly conducive to enjoying the scenery.

Amish Daycare

So I will have to share some pictures I took back years ago, the first two farmscapes above were taken this year, the only images obtained in five days of driving around.

As always, right click on any image for a larger version.

Heavy rain forecasted for Sunday, then a couple of nice days predicted, maybe I might get some shots before I leave.

July 26 – 30, 2013 A Week in Amish Country

Haystacks and Barns at sunrise Holmes County, Ohio
Haystacks and Barns at sunrise Holmes County, Ohio

Holmes County Amish, Ohio

Took this sunrise haystacks in the field photo from behind the parking lot of the “famous” Heini’s Cheese Factory.

Barn advertising Heini cheese factory
Heini Cheese, really?

Sorry, please forgive me, but before I go on, I have to wonder what would give cause to an individual with a last name of Heini, to think it a good idea to use that name for his cheese factory. Smith, ok, Johnson Cheese Factory, yes, but Heini Cheese? Really.

The name bothered me so much, I went to Howard Butt’s cheese shop across the road for my pound of cheddar. 😉

I got myself reassigned to a new site up on the office level of the campground and now have good Verizon signal for the internet. Although the atmosphere might be better down below       ( you are located near a farmer’s enclosed deer pen and can watch his horses in their pasture ), I need the internet to work on getting this blog going.

Went down to Der Dutchman in Walnut Grove for their dinner buffet and found it a little less than it was billed. Fare was limited in choice and very ordinary, certainly, not bad, just nothing I would bother with again ( I am on a budget, so dining out has to be a rare pleasure ).

After driving around the area for a few days, I found going north and east from Berlin on 77 and 241 to be the most productive area for photo opportunities of the Amish countryside.

Image of family loading horse buggy with groceries
Grocery Shopping
Family in Horse drawn buggy
Heading to Sunday services

 

Haystacks and barns, Amish country
Haystacks and barns, Amish country
Amish Country Farmscape Panorama
Amish Country Farmscape Panorama

While out taking these photos, I stopped at an Amish farm stand and bought half a dozen ears of corn and a couple huge garden fresh tomatoes ( $1.25/lb what a steal ). Both were delicious!

The last two days here were rainy, so stayed in and worked on trying to get this blog going. Installed MAMP and WordPress on my iMac co I could work on this when I do not have an internet signal. Also reenrolled with Lynda.com ( a great resource I highly recommend to anyone wanting to learn just about anything ) to take a few WordPress courses. This is starting to eat up more of my data usage with Verizon than I like and I am sure I am going to be paying some overage charges this month spending all this time online.

July 25, 2013 A week in Amish Country

Berlin, Holmes County, Ohio

Arrived at Scenic Hills Rv Park around none and was assigned site #122 in the lower section. Weather was nice, so I got myself set up and then did a run around the immediate area to get my bearings, and, hopefully find a grocery store to stock up, saw some nice landscapes and a few closed farm stands ( it was now after 5 PM ) but did not find a grocery store.  Went back to my site and turned on the Jet Pac to search for the nearest grocery and, uh oh, no signal. Sitting down in the hollow here in the lower section, the surrounding hills block both my Verizon signal and the campgrounds WIFI. Will have to see if I can get moved up top tomorrow.

Amish Country Farmscape Panorama
Amish Country Farmscape

I thought it was very considerate of these cows to pose so perfectly for this farm country landscape.

Amish Barn Raising
Amish Barn Raising

Saw this crew starting the framing of a small barn late this afternoon as I was running around looking for a grocery store. By the next afternoon, the roof was on.

July 21, 2013 Lift Off! Liberation Day

Today I officially became homeless and unemployed.

After 5 years of attempting to sell my home and business, today I am freed of all encumbrances, no more physical ties to the Upper Valley region of New Hampshire, my home for the past 34 years.

Today, as I head west on I-89, out of my adopted home state, my long anticipated next (final?) adventure begins. After 20 years of owning and running a business and 30 plus years of rehabbing and maintaining a 5700 square foot, 200 year old house, it seems almost hard to believe that my only responsibilities now are my two canine companions and the only daily chores will be to keep my 2004 Allegro motorhome and my “toad”, a 2012 Prius, running smoothly. Oh, and I guess I will also have to make an attempt to figure out how to keep a blog going and perhaps even make it interesting.

Image of the Red Roof Gallery in Enfield, NH
Welcome to the Red Roof Gallery in Enfield, NH

Since 1993 I have owned and operated the Red Roof Frame Shop and Gallery in Enfield, NH, with another shop in West Lebanon, NH. With the sale of the Enfield property, the Red Roof Gallery in Enfield is no more ( the West Lebanon Red Roof Frame Shop will continue on under the new owner, Lisa Tibbits, who, incidentally, has been running the shop on her own for the past seven years ) and, while I suppose I should feel some kind of remorse, I must admit that it is more like relief, not regret.

Front yard perennial beds at the Enfield Red Roof Gallery
Front yard perennial beds at the Enfield Red Roof Gallery

 

 

Beautiful, yes, but, to me, all I can think is, no more weeding, transplanting, watering, mulching, autumn cut down and cleanup, never again! Free at last!

 

 

View of the carriage barn that houses the workshop end of the Red Roof Frame Shop in Enfield
View of the carriage barn that houses the workshop end of the Red Roof Frame Shop in Enfield

 

Also, no more scrapping and painting, no more lawns to mow, and never again will I have to shovel and snowblow that awful white stuff.

Opening reception for "The Flower Show" at the Red Roof Gallery
Opening reception for “The Flower Show” at the Red Roof Gallery
Opening reception for "All in the Family" at the Red Roof Gallery
Opening reception for “All in the Family” at the Red Roof Gallery

 

No more art shows to hang and take down, no more Opening Night Receptions (I will miss the excitement, the people, the conversations), no more 4 AM til 10 PM work days, no more vendor delivery mess-ups.

 

 

Also, most importantly, no more (censored) government paperwork and interference. I never realized, until starting a business and hiring employees, just how much productive time our wonderful government agencies, federal, state, and local, can manage to steal from a small businessperson.

So, with that little rant off my shoulders, off I go. My intent here is to provide viewers with some interesting photos of places I visit, people I meet, and wildlife I run into. I am a semi accomplished photographer and I do tend to concentrate on wildlife, especially birds, but I also appreciate the many wonderful landscapes I constantly observe in my travels.

Below is a small sampling of the sort or work I do. Just click on each thumbnail for a larger version of the image.

Geese lifting off at sunset, Lubec, Maine
Geese lifting off at sunset, Lubec, Maine
Yellowstone grizzly heading to his winter den
Yellowstone grizzly heading to his winter den
Great egrets start an aerial battle (or a dance?)
Great egrets start an aerial battle (or a dance?)
Yellowstone elk welcomes a 21 degree morning
Yellowstone elk welcomes a 21 degree morning
The fishing boat graveyard on Campobello Island, Canada
The graveyard on Campobello Island, Canada
Hot air balloons over the Valley of the Gods, Utah
Hot air balloons over the Valley of the Gods, Utah
Amish daycare, father and girls working a team of horses
Amish daycare
Altima oriole courting display
Altima oriole courting display
Foliage reflection on the bog
Fire on the water
Image of 3 Whooping Cranes and a Sandhill crane
3 Whooping Cranes and a Sandy
Killdeer in a N.Dakota cornfield
Killdeer in a N.Dakota cornfield
Cedar waxwing looking for lunch
Cedar waxwing looking for lunch