At long last, I'm getting around to posting some pictures from our trip to Ohio's Amish country for our anniversary last month. Fair warning: I have a ton of pictures to share, so this will be multiple posts, and I think most of our favorites are at the end. So it'll take a while to get there.
It was about a 6.5-hour drive from our house to where we stayed in Millersburg, which was the Miller Haus bed and breakfast. Our first experience at a B&B! Anyway, we got in around 3 in the afternoon and Lee took some pics around the B&B to start us off.
That's the actual building of the B&B. If you look on the website linked above, we stayed in the Quilting Corner Room, which is now painted butter yellow and not pale blue like in the photo. It's right next to the kitchen, which is good because you're closest to the food in the morning, but bad because you hear the staff making breakfast pretty early ; )
Can I just say nice shot, Lee! I like the composition on this one.
Proof that I was there. And I tried out the swing.
At this point, I'm pretty sure this picture fairly well sums up my view on life. Totally off kilter but at least I get to look at Lee : D
The next day, we drove in to the town of Berlin to visit the Amish & Mennonite Heritage Center. The first thing we did there was take a tour of the one-room school house and a barn.
The furnace inside the school house is a Frost Killer, I like it. Our tour guide explained that the Amish only educate up to 8th grade, and they teach fewer subjects than regular public schools. On the other hand, by the time Amish children graduate, they're fluent in three languages (English, German, and the Amish dialects that are most closely related to the dialects from Swabia in Germany) and they teach their subjects more in depth.
All the kids from a small area will attend school together and likely have the same teacher for all eight grades. Personally, I had some teachers that I was very happy to bid adieu at the end of the school year.
The guide showed us one book that was about buggy safety and driving a buggy on the roads. He said thirty years ago they thought that book was really stupid because you can't learn driving a horse from a book, but there's so much more car traffic now than there used to be that the book learnin' of the laws of the road actually is a good thing. But we laughed when he flat-out said he thought it was stupid at first.
And there's the outside of the school. Next up was the barn, and it was hard to take pictures in there because of limited light and lack of windows, but I gave it a shot. Haha punny, I was shooting pictures.
The barn contains two Amish buggies and a restored Conestoga wagon (remember Little House in the Prairie?). The Conestoga wagon is narrower and taller than you might think it is, and our guide explained that even children likely wouldn't have ridden in the wagon, they would have walked along behind it. Because there's not a whole lot of room to store all your worldly possessions and what you'd need to start a life in a faraway territory.
This is a summertime buggy from the 1860s, believe it or not. The former owners spruced it up a bit before they donated it.
And this one is only about 10 years old or so from what I remember. Our guide said a buggy like this might cost around $5800, but it should last a lifetime (depending on how good a driver you are, because even Amish teenage boys are reckless drivers). We were told that you can tell exactly what sect a person or family belongs to based on certain features of the buggies. There are lots of sects of Amish people, varying in how strict they are with dress code, religions beliefs, how much technology they use, etc.
And there's inside the back of the Conestoga wagon. If you look at the bottom of the photo you'll see a little bucket hanging off the rail; that was filled with grease which was used to grease the wagon wheels every morning before the pioneers started off. And the bucket still smells like greasy smoke.
More pics later. Cheers, peeps!