We are in Ronks PA, Lancaster County, the heart of Amish country. Horse and buggies, clothes drying on the line, teams of horses harvesting corn. It’s all very picturesque, bucolic even, (I always wanted to use that word).
I’ve never been enamored with the Amish. Read enough books and stories to assess them as a kind of cult. Anyone who won’t use a clothes dryer is sorta missing one of the simple joys of life, if you ask me.
But the countryside is gorgeous
We drove here from New Stanton PA, assuming we’d follow the Pennsylvania Turnpike,
Our RV directions took us on a wild ride down back roads with 20 mph hairpin turns and 14% drops…
We’re still recovering
As we reviewed the map it seems it was all about avoiding a tunnel, that would have turned us away due to our propane tanks. No flammables are allowed in the tunnel, but its not well monitored so people like us risk it, (we were unaware of that). Bruce felt like it would have been worth it to ditch the tanks on one side of the tunnel and buy new ones to avoid the drive we had.
I can’t say I disagree
Our current campground is lovely. Family oriented. We back up to the playground and listened to kids playing into the dark over the weekend. There are at least 6 other RV’s of our brand/style here. And while we haven’t met another full timer at this camp, we’re guessing one of those RV’s is probably like us.
We determine the full timers by whether or not they sold their homes
We’ve met 7 or so and we’ve only been at it for 60+ days. Seems we weren’t the only ones to take this plunge. Several of us are using the time to scout out new home bases. Places more amenable to a retirement life. Less taxes, better weather, more cost effective and sustainable.
A common theme for those facing fixed incomes in an inflated world
We’ve met people who left Ohio, California (Atascadero!), Florida, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Texas. At our last stop a long haul trucker and his wife parked next to us. They live full time in their truck or their RV. And they long haul…
Our other neighbors were from Atascadero CA. I was surprised that anyone would leave such a beautiful place! She explained that they were tired of their jobs, their house was highly valued, and the area had become less attractive than in the past. So they bought an RV, took off, and ended up spending a year in it. They just bought a house in Paducah KY and will move in next year. She’s a knitter and they are headed to a fiber fair in upstate NY.
Adventure on the road is limitless!
Lancaster County is littered with small artisan food and craft stores. Pumpkin yeast bread, pies, sticky buns, and quilts, quilts quilts. I ventured into a local quilt store that only sells quilts from Lancaster county. They can be machine pieced but have to be hand quilted by one person.
I picked up a few items under the guise of supporting their store
The city of Lancaster itself is another wonder of artisan creativity. A street of art galleries. A central food mall with every kind of locally made food. The smoked meats and cheeses were irresistible. Produce, jams, cookies, breads, sandwiches, and seafood. You couldn’t skip it. It’s also a city of colleges, so there were lots of,
College towns and hipsters seem to go hand in hand. Big cities always have a hipster neighborhood, but those mid sized cities reek of them.
I will say, they excel at making coffee…
Because Lancaster is a very old city, the architecture was interesting. Front doors directly on the sidewalk, no easement or space between them. Steps for tying up your horse still remained. Gentrification was happening in bursts. And stone and brick work dominated the city. In general, Pennsylvania is known for it’s stone and wood homes.
They do not disappoint
Yesterday we saw Philly’s historic block. Independence hall and the Liberty Bell. Rain poured and we persevered! Took all afternoon to dry out and warm up but it was worth it.
Tomorrow we head to Gettysburg
We’ve always been history people, and American history is full of nuance and unknown details. So many contradictions and stories never told in school. Seeing the places where things actually happened is a rich experience.
One of the distinctions about this life is that it’s both adventure/sightseeing and living. Today we’re doing life. Oil change, repair on the skylight in the bathroom, a bit of shopping for essentials and some cleanup. But we also can’t wait for perfect weather to see everything that we hope to see. Currently it’s the rain. It sounds like microwave popcorn when it falls. The acorns dropping from the trees sound more like gunshots…
Took us a bit to figure that one out!
Last week it was a sewage snafu that had Bruce working on the more unpleasant aspects of RV life.
I used the camp restrooms…
Its all part of the journey. Some days it’s vacation and adventure, and others it’s simply life.
The best part is avoiding property taxes!