Monthly Archives: October 2013

Exploring Amish Country – Day one

So. I have a new obsession.

Everything Amish.

I became fascinated with the Amish years ago. Watching documentaries and readng books made the Amish seem like something foreign and far away. Something I would never encounter. Therefore, I was beyond tickled pink when I found out that I now live less than an hour away from the largest Amish settlement in the world.

A couple of weeks ago, Kyle had a couple of days off, so we went to explore. We arrived in the evening and headed off to dinner. I had been told that the family dinner at Der Dutchman was not to be missed, so we decided to head there.

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We then discovered one of the biggest problems one encounters whilst driving in Amish Country  Рgetting stuck behind a wagon. As a result, we almost missed dinner. Thankfully, my giddy excitement over the fact that I was stuck behind a real Amish wagon meant that our moods were high regardless.

I had read about Amish food. It seemed like very simply country fare, and I naively assumed that it would therefore be bland.

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I have never been more wrong in my life. Seriously. I am still talking about the creamed corn we had. I had previously only had it from a can. That stuff is the greatest substance known to mankind.

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We finished dinner with pie. Kyle had a ground cherry pie. Ground cherries are green cherries that grow on the ground. The pie was basically everything that is good in the world.

After we were thoroughly stuffed we were forced to call it a night. Turns out Amish Country shuts down really early!

Quintessential American Experience #1: The county fair!

Well, I have arrived and started to settle into my new life in the USA. A small housing development in rural NE Ohio to be precise. We picked up our marriage license today, and, since Kyle has two days in a row off, have headed down to Amish country. I am really excited to be here – the Amish were always SO foreign to me, yet so fascinating. I am really excited to explore more and learn about their culture and lifestyle.

Anyway, a couple of weeks ago Kyle was working on a Saturday, so my in-laws took me to the county fair. It was a really fun experience. Prior to this, I had never heard of tractor pulls or elephant ears, nor had I had the chance to sample the glories of deep fried oreos. (On an unrelated note, 3 weeks in the US plus 2 in Nz plus a couple of not caring weeks in Japan = Laura’s weight going in the wrong direction. Time to do something about that. From Wednesday, when I get home from Amish Country).

Anyway, without further ado, here are some photos:

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There were a bunch of animals (duh). They were cute. I wish their cages were bigger though, even if the fair was only short term.

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Oh my goodness gracious me, way more rides than we have at fairs in New Zealand. My sister-in-law and I went on the ferris wheel. I forgot my fear of heights until it was too late – It hadn’t dawned on me that it was a non covered/outdoor ferris wheel, so you could feel the breeze and see the tractor pulling, and freeze in terror at any rock or creak the ferris wheel made.

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Dinner. I attempted to get quintessential American fair food: A corn dog and nachos. After about 3 minutes, I realised the folly of my ways.

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And THIS is tractor pulling! Basically, tractors compete to see who can pull a weight the furtherest. Well, the people driving the, do. These were loud. Really, really loud. (sorry it’s blurry – my phone doesn’t take great motion pics)

After a while, watching loud tractors made me a little restless, so my sister-in-law and I went for a wander.

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This looked really American, so I made her pose in front of it.

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I found the fair quen of a different county fair. Apparently the represent their county at other fairs as well.

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This is a giant pit of dried corn. Really. And I got to play in it. My life is fantastic.

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This sort of thing reminds me that I’m not at home any more.

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Deep fried oreos. And stunning photography, no?

Anyway, that was the first of many adventures I anticipate having, in between sitting at home shouting at my computer in an attempt to somehow turn that shouting into a masters degree.

Also, a big welcome to Ohio to Molly, at A Move to America http://themovetoamerica.wordpress.com/ . Molly has just made the big move here as well, and is much better at actually updating her blog!