I had a glorious weekend away with my friends visiting our favorite B&B owners and harassing the Amish folk in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. (We don’t really harass them. We just say that. It’s funnier that way. Trust me.) We arrived on Friday, hoping to take advantage of the Green Dragon Farmer’s Market in Ephrata (as outlined earlier on this blog) but for this first time I’ve ever known, it was closed. Their advertising claims they are open every Friday unless Christmas falls on that day; the cray-cray snow shut down the stalwart of shopping. What to do? I had 20 pounds of bacon to buy.
What? You’re surprised at the amounts? Let me assure you, anyone who tastes this bacon wants to know who my connection is. It’s that good. It’s applewood smoked bacon, from happy pigs in Amish country. (I assume they’re happy pigs because my mouth and my belly are very happy as a result. Vegans, please don’t be hating.)
Friends beg me to get them some, Younger Daughter has been
dealing selling it to friends on campus, and Older Daughter has threatened physical violence to anyone getting between her and her drug of choice. This 20 pounds gets packaged into one-pound packages, frozen, and lovingly tucked into our freezer for the course of the year.
Lucky for us, we have known this Amish couple for over 10 years, and they’ve encouraged us to come to the house to order and pick up bacon, so that’s what we did. Mrs. Amish Lady is warm and loving, and always greets us with a big hug and asks how our trip was. Mr. Amish Man is quiet and keeps to himself, but every once in a while he’ll feel gregarious and talk about the weather. I wouldn’t miss it for anything. They have an old farmhouse which is accessed by a long driveway that passes another house (a son, perhaps? He likes dogs.) and an open-sided barn of cows before winding up at their front yard which features a gazebo and an arbor. Like many of the Amish homes, this one features white clapboard siding and has the obligatory green shades, and inside the side door is where some of their other items are sold. Both my friend and I requested 20 pounds each, and that Made Mr. Amish Man very happy while Mrs. Amish Lady wanted to know what sort of recipes we used with all that bacon. (Recipes? We don’t need no sinkin’ recipes!)
We made arrangements to come back Monday to pick it up, and said goodbye. Mrs. Amish Lady clucked happily as we left, while Mr. Amish Man went back to his lunch. Then it was on to our regular B&B which is unique and wonderful and the owners are a hoot and a holler but I’m not saying what it is because it is my little secret place and they are always booked solid so I don’t want any competition. There is no television and they only recently got wi-fi, but it makes me so happy. My favorite part about this place is coming up to the main house for breakfast, because we sit in a glassed-in porch which looks out over the meadows and we can see the little creek and the cows in the next field over. Plus Mr. and Mrs. B&B are delightful hosts with hundreds of stories to tell and never cease to make people laugh. It’s like a comedy routine every morning, complete with props and pictures. If we’re fortunate, two of the Amish neighbors stop by for coffee and hello, and they are not what you’d call pious folk, exactly. In fact, they are downright randy. They will tease us “English” and gently make fun of us with our smart phones making us less smart and our cars that park themselves, saying their horses already do that. There is genuine affection between Mr. and Mrs. B&B and these Amish men, and they have helped each other through several tragedies and celebrated through several joys. And we get to witness a small part of it.
Invariably, I see the relationships between these folks and invariably think of my own. Do I show enough affection for Hubby? Do I appreciate Older and Younger Daughter verbally? Would I trade my life for any of theirs?