Saturday, 22 August 2015

At Home with the Hoosiers..

which is a term for people from Indiana - the origin of which is cloaked in mystery -
Thursday June 25th 
Leaving Shipshewana using one of the buggy lanes specially created for buggy traffic.  You can see how the speedy trotters have worn a path in the lane, and sometimes this is reinforced with extra tarmac.
The following videoclip taken a few miles further on gives an indication of fast the buggies travel in comparison with our plodding progress
The Amish/Mennonite communities find difficulty in supporting their large families with only the income from their farms, and most youngsters have alternative jobs.  Many Amish work in traditional activities such as woodworking/carpentry as in this business..
 ..but the Shipshewana/Goshen area is a centre for the RV (Recreational Vehicle or camper) industry, which employs many local Amish...... this sight is not atypical!
 After stopping en route for an Amish lunch at the house of Kenny's daughter and son-in-law, I arrived at the Sundance Stables in Goshen. I had arranged for Lady to stay at this boarding stables in advance, and was delighted to find they had organised a meet and greet buffet with the boarders! Here I am with some of those present..
 L to R: Hanna, Laura Tracey, Me, Darla Miller, Haley Johnson, Dawn Herron, Lacy Johnson, Jamie Johnson.  Maggie Swallow is taking the photo
Laura and husband Steven (a photographer and former rugby player who makes a mean rhubarb crumble) also hosted me at their lovely home, where I had a luxurious bedroom and ensuite to myself.
PS: Unfortunately I have just heard that Laura recently had a very bad accident being bucked off a horse, breaking her back, hip and shoulder.  Wishing her all the best for a speedy recovery.
The next morning Friday June 26th I negotiated round Goshen with Steven's help.  Thankfully obstacles such as the one shown below presented no problem to a horse!..
I had arranged overnight accommodation for Lady near Wakarusa at Joe and Michelle Reser's  Setting Sun Stables where they breed, train and show Arabian horses and their half breds.  It was a pity Joe and Michelle were away on the show circuit with some of their best horses, as I have a soft spot for a good Arabian, having used them for competing in endurance.  But many thanks to breeding manager Josh Biron who looked after Lady and me.
 I was given use of the clients' shower room and allowed to kip down in front of the telly in the very plush observation gallery - bliss.

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