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I was born and raised in Lancaster, Pennsylvania - in Amish Country!
There can be no assumption that today's majority is 'right' and the Amish and others like them are 'wrong.' A way of life that is odd or even erratic but interferes with no rights or interests of others is not to be condemned because it is different.
Warren E. Burger
At Motel 6 in Amish Country I wonder if they leave the light on for you?
The Amish communities of Pennsylvania, despite the retro image of horse-drawn buggies and straw hats, have long been engaged in a productive debate about the consequences of technology.
I'm remote from most technology to the point that I'm kind of Amish.
Until fairly recently, Amish teachers would reprimand the student who raised his or her hand as being too individualistic. Calling attention to oneself, or being 'prideful,' is one of the cardinal Amish worries. Having your name or photo in the papers, even talking to the press, is almost a sin.
Vegetarian is like raising a kid Mennonite. It's difficult but not that different. Raising your kid vegan is like being Amish. A totally different world.
I drive out to this quail farm, where I get a lot of these incredible quail eggs, which I eat all day long. And I eat a lot of superfoods like goji, cacao and chia seeds, things like that. And I like unpasteurised milk of the goat and the sheep. They send it once a week from Pennsylvania, from the Amish farms, and I get it in Los Angeles.
The Amish like to live a very plain lifestyle, the way they think God intended. It sort of brings you back to, like, 'Little House on the Prairie' days or something.
On the farm, I had chores. I had a calf. We had a herd of cattle in the pasture. We'd go and get me a calf at a cow auction with Amish people, which I would raise. I gave it a bottle every day, in this cute little coop, like a giant dog coop almost. I've always been a big animal person.
I'm not Amish, but I grew up in that same area of Pennsylvania and became very attracted to the inherent strictness and uniformity of that community.
Growing up around Amish farmland, I enjoyed the opportunity to witness firsthand their love of family, of the domestic arts - sewing, quilting, cooking, baking - as well as seeing them live out their tradition of faith in such a unique way.
I grew up Protestant. My dad was a Charismatic pastor of the Families of God denomination. Often, we noticed that - during a lot of his evangelistic-type services - that some of the Amish and Old Order Mennonite couples would come and stand across the street from the church and look in the door.
If you're a good Amish girl, you're courting, you have three or four different beaus, and you go out and stay out all night. That's just their tradition. They date under the covering of night. No one knows who they're dating or seeing until two weeks before they're going to be married. It's how they've done it for 300 years.
My mother's people are Old Order Mennonite - horse and buggy Mennonite, very close cousins to the Amish. I grew up in Lancaster County and lived near Amish farm land.
One of my earliest memories was of seeing horse-drawn buggies with little Amish children peering out at me from the back, their legs dangling as they jabbered in Pennsylvania Dutch, sometimes pointing and giggling at my family following slowly behind them in our car.
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