Monday, June 6, 2011

Amish Country

Wal-Mart is an integral component of Amish life. wdsiemerii
Over the weekend I went to Amish Country in central Ohio.

It's kind of surreal seeing all the Mennonites dressed in their traditional, conservative garb and squared-off beards, especially in 90+ degree weather. You go to the local Wal-Mart and about 33% percent of the shoppers are... Amish? Cars pass horses and buggies, vast farms, handcrafted Amish knick-knack stores (for those who love kitsch items), cheese and wine cellars, Amish hotels and restaurants.

It seems a lot are wealthy and live sort of a contradictory life. You'll pass huge Amish mansions, farms, places of business, and see Amish passengers packed into white transporter vans (just not driving). Apparently they get some tax breaks too. I don't know the politics.

Previously we went to a drive-thru feeding zoo where animals come up to the window of car (or tractor) for you to feed them. They have an assortment of wildlife--ostrich, zebra, alpaca, moose, hippos, gators, giraffes, etc. It's a pretty fascinating place that will leave your car in need of a serious cleaning.

This trip, we went to the Farmstead restaurant (another popular one is Dutch Valley), basically an Amish version of a typical buffet. Food was really good and filling--corn, mashed potatoes, noodles, fried chicken, fresh salads, desserts, and the such.

The Amish life really isn't for me, but the occasional trip into their world isn't so bad.

|Visit Amish Country|

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