Bus Trip to Amish Country

The chartered bus arrived promptly at eight in the morning. The weather was perfect, sunny and dry. The beep-beep of the bus backing up sent the waiting passengers scurrying to get on board. The scene reminded me of charging the school bus to get the best seat when I was a kid. Only I'm not a kid. This trip was planned for senior citizens.

Each person was given a large shopping bag with their name on it. A good idea as everyone planned to buy souvenirs. These bags were to be stored under the coach to keep the overhead rack free. YEAH, SURE. The plan failed. Everyone put their stuff on the overhead rack. Heaven help us if the bus had to make a sudden stop.

The windows on the bus were about as high as the drivers of the semi-trucks that whizzed by. Temptation was too great. Some of our more adventurous passengers were making up-and-down movements with their arms to try and get the truck drivers to blow the horn. Again I thought of my days riding a school bus. The only difference between then and now is arthritic arms don't move as easily as children's arms.

Everyone was laughing and enjoying the fun like a bunch of teenagers. I heard pleas of "Are we there yet?" "Stop messing with my stuff," "That's my magazine, not yours," "You're eating all the candy," "I'm hungry," and "Where's my inhaler?" Some things never change, no matter how old you are.

We arrived at our destination 90 minutes later. Our first stop was a very old but well-kept country store. The sturdy wooden floor creaked and croaned as the busload of seniors looked around. Signs in big bold letters pointed the way to the necessary rooms. Thank goodness. Several stops later we went to lunch. It was the best chicken dinner I've had in a long time. Then on to another store which sold food in bulk. You name it, they had it. The ladies loved it. You could buy cheese, nuts for baking, dried beans and peas for soup, and of course, candy.

At the next stop you could buy anything from books to plows. That John Deere tractor looked pretty snazzy. Someone bought a cast iron frying pan and guess where it ended up – in the overhead rack. The rack was  crammed full with a lot of breakables, including jelly jars, apple butter and knick-knacks of all shapes and sizes. At the end of the trip all items were still intact and no one got hit in the head by a flying frying pan.

We visited a winery where you could get a sample of each wine for a quarter a piece. This was a popular stop. Then we headed back home. The leaves had not yet turned color but no one was disappointed. When we arrived home people gathered their bags, bundles and walkers and headed for the building, looking tired but happy.

Bruce Leigh

Bay Village

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Volume 5, Issue 22, Posted 10:12 AM, 10.29.2013