Friday, June 04, 2004

Shakers and Bikers

I got up early, dressed and headed out for a run, leaving Dan and the dog asleep in our comfortable room. The roads were nice, but with very steep hills that made for a difficult run for me. In just thirty minutes I managed to find two small family cemetaries that appeared to be quite old. It was interesting to see such a mix of old and new houses, with these cemetaries interspersed among them.

As I finished up my run, I found Talley the terrier waiting for me outside the barn. She trotted up to me with a small stick which I obligingly threw for her to chase. Not only did she retrieve it, but she shook it, bit it and pretty well destroyed it. I believe terriers were once used to hunt rats and other vermin. Good choice. They're good at killing sticks, at any rate. Then I went inside and found our hosts in the kitchen. I made the mistake of mentioning that Talley had slept with us and they started telling her what a bad dog she was. I assured them we had enjoyed the company, but I felt bad for getting that sweet dog in trouble.

I showered and dressed for breakfast, which was served on an antique trestle table in front of the old cooking fireplace. Breakfast was a pear in currant sauce, fried potatoes, bacon and a "Bismark," an odd but delicious omlette-like thing with jelly. After breakfast we reluctantly packed and headed out. I would've liked to have spent a couple days there, relaxing in the country, but it just wasn't in our plans.

We headed over to Canterbury Shaker Village where we went on a couple of tours. I had thought there wasn't much a tour guide could tell me about the Shakers that I didn't already know, but of course I was wrong. Among other things, he did a little Shaker song and dance for us. Weird, but cool. There wasn't as much to see at Canterbury as at the Hancock village, but what there was was excellent.

We tried to get some snacks and water at their little restauarant before we left, but there were several buses' worth of schoolkids overrunning everything. Luckily there was another Shaker shop by the parking lot, with cheese, herbs, etc. They also had water and cookies, which was all I really wanted anyway.

It was a long drive to Kay's in Brownsville, but things became noticably prettier once we had crossed the state line into Vermont. Kay was out when we arrived but had left a note and brownies. She came in soon after we had brought in all our bags and proceeded to tell us that she was closing the inn soon. The mortgage was paid and she wanted to devote her remaining active years to worthy causes. Her daughter, son-in-law and their kids would be moving in with her and were already living in temporary quarters in the upstairs part of the house. We were disappointed to hear she was closing, but it sounded like she was happy about it. It's always nice when someone you know gets to live their dreams.

Then we went to East Dorset for dinner, went to the local cemetary and talked to some bikers on Harleys. Then we came back to Kay's, made some tea and watched the stars from the front yard until we were sleepy and it was time for bed.

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