I took three short trips off the interstate today, trying to find something other than rest areas and the usual fast food joints you find near interstates. The first two side trips were unsuccessful. The first led to malls and suburbia, and the second led to a place that wasn’t worth the trip.
But the third side trip led to the barn where my older sister is taking care of three horses. It led me past the Village Smorgasbord in the middle block of downtown Hagerstown. It wound down past a small creek bed, through woodlands, around a bend where a white clapboard church, Nettle Creek Friends Meeting, stands next to a little cemetery, then in between eight foot high walls of corn, and at last to a house where my sister fed me dinner, and then to the barn where her horse is stabled.
Jean and I and the two dogs, Tracer and Parker, walked from the house down to the barn. Already in the barn were several pairs of barn swallows, three horses, and a cat named Pumpkin who ate baby Barn Swallows when he could get them. Jean showed me how the timbers of the barn had been hand hewn, and pegged together with oak pegs. Tracer lay down on the barn floor and kept an eye on things:
All too soon, it was time for me to get on the road again, and I forgot to wish my sister a happy birthday. Happy birthday, Jean!