Thursday, September 07, 2006

Madison, WI to Elkhart, IN

It's our anniversary today. I think it's the first time we've ever been apart, but then since Labor Day is such a great time to travel, I may have been in Maine or somewhere else at another time.

I didn't think I'd have anything to write about at this point. Our sightseeing is over and the absence of National Parks and Monuments on our way home left me thinking it was just a matter of miles and doing the time.

But I'm surprised again here in Elkhart, IN. About 30 miles east of South Bend, we found not only the home of 70% of all RV manufacturing in the world, but also the second largest Amish population in the country. These two things did not happen by coincidence. The RV manufacturers chose to be here to make use of the Amish's exceptional craftmanship.

I would imagine that this would be a great place to shop for a camper or to get repairs.

We'd seen Mennonites on our way out to Seattle. They camped in huge bus-size RVs with several families together. I would always see the men walking around with the children, while I assumed the women were inside preparing meals or doing other things. The Amish, would not be found in RVs, because they won't even drive cars, but they are building these things apparently.

With the impending oil crisis and global warming to face are the Amish going to be miles ahead of the rest of us? We may be impatient when we're driving behind their horse and buggy, but it may not be long before we're asking them to help us learn how to live more simply ourselves.

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