After a good nights sleep, we awoke fairly early and headed off to indulge ourselves in some FREE breakfast, included in the price of our stay at The Travellers Rest Motel.

We helped ourselves to a hearty breakfast of Cereals, Pancake and Yoghurt, helped down by lashings of Tea and Coffee, to keep us going until our next refreshment break.

With breakfast out of the way, we had a little time on our hands before we were due to take our Amish Tour, so we decided to take a short walk into the village for a quick look around.

We didn’t really have any time for shopping, but we were sure that we would have plenty of opportunity for that during our tour.

The village was so beautiful and all of the streets and buildings were so well kept, and despite there being a lack of pavements (sidewalks), we got a little insight into what can only be described as a thriving, tourist fuelled economy.

Everybody was so friendly and down to earth, it really was a pleasurable place to spend a little time.

Although the shops in the village are not Amish owned, they are certainly filled with arts and crafts produced by the local Amish community, and a lot of the shop workers were local Amish people.

Whilst the Amish will not pose for photographs, and generally frown upon photography, the visit would not have been complete without the odd photo of the Amish, most of which I apologise are background crops of larger photographs and lacking in quality.

Our walk was quite brief as we needed to return to the Motel for the Amish Tour, which thankfully was in an air-conditioned mini-bus, which made the trip all the more comfortable, but had the limitation of requiring us to shoot photos through the window, which, combined with the motion of the bus did not help with the quality of the images, so my apologies for their quality.

Most of the Amish people are farmers and their homesteads as they are affectionately termed, although quite impressive in stature are noticeably devoid of any of the standard amenities that we are all used to in our day to day lives, such as electricity, meaning no luxury items for these folk, just a simple life.

Tobacco is a popular produce for the Amish people and can be seen drying in many of the outbuildings, and farmed in the fields. Take note that all of the farm vehicles used by the Amish are devoid of rubber tyres. Rubber is seen by the Amish as something “which would promote sloth, luxury or vanity”, thus they are strictly prohibited.

The Amish are allowed the use of some modern amenities provided that they have been adapted to work with non-electric fuel sources, such as propane or batteries. I did ask why they have tractors, and apparently these are only used for heavy labour tasks such as blowing silage to the top of silos, powering feed grinders and hydraulic systems, pumping liquid manure etc. The use of tractors in the fields is strictly prohibited.

Amish clothing is very simple and usually of a dark fabric, Women wear solid colour dresses and men wear trousers. The use of buttons is frowned upon, and zips are strictly forbidden. Many women still use simple pins to fasten their clothing.

Amish women will normally make their own wedding dresses, but nothing as fancy as lace and wedding trains are allowed. She will normally only wear this dress for her wedding, after which it will be stored away and only used again to dress her when she dies. Apparently some Amish communities permit the wearing of the wedding dress as the woman’s standard Sunday church attire after she is married, which does at least give it some more use.

Our bus tour did take us to a number of Amish owned stores, one of which specialised in the making af Quilts. The store was Family Farm Quilts and the quilts are ALL handmade by Amish and Mennonite women, stitched entirely by hand and can take anything from 3 -6 months to complete.

We fell in love with one of the designs and placed an order, which I can tell you was delivered to us in early January 2015, and it certainly did not disappoint. You will see the photograph of the design that we chose, and I have included a photo of the finished article in pride of place on our bed. We also purchased the Pillow Blanket that you can see on our bed behind the heart cushion, which folds out into a handy blanket.

We also visited an Amish Hardware Store and a Farm Shop where we bought some wonderful home cooked Amish Wares, one of which you can see Sharon brandishing just before we devoured it…

After that it was time to hit the road again and make our way to Emmitsburg in Maryland for our next overnight stay at the Sleep Inn and Suites, Emmitsburg, MD.

We did not have too far to travel and arrived shortly after 5.00pm, checked in and nipped to the local Pizza Hut for a bite to eat and some liquid refreshment before returning to the room to get some sleep in preparation for our next day, when we will be visiting Gettysburg, before heading on to Washington, DC, for 3 days and nights of non stop sightseeing.