Norman is also very fond of sports, in particular a fan of the game of tennis, which we soon realized in the center of Nashville in the main tennis center, which is usually held once a year the famous Virginia Slims tournaments. I felt quite proud, playing on center court and was very surprised by the excellent physical condition of Norman. He was in very good shape, and I had a lot of problems to compete properly.
Most of all I liked the fact that I was adopted at several meetings of the United Nations – Greek / Roman building, located near Vanderbilt. In fact Norman was an active member of his committee; Therefore, he had several times invited me to some rather interesting events, such as a lecture UN ambassador, who had a lively debate about the political situation in Iran and Iraq. Another relevant event was the presentation of the Russian speaker, which summed up the poor conditions in their country.
Basically, I appreciated the fact that the speakers are not avoided talking turkey, presenting their problems to the public.
Another topic on which he focuses on – it trips in the area of Nashville. However, the most exciting trip still had to come. When my sister and her friend Marianne came to Nashville, we met briefly on the international coffee hours Maktayery and spontaneously decided to head to Lavrensburg, place south of Nashville.
This trip would have to surpass all that I have experienced so far: we were ready to travel to Amish country, unknown and hard world. The area around Lavrensburga was characterized by remote farms and small market towns. Amish, also known as Anabaptists, completely detached from the "British" and live their normal lives, carefully formulated implementation of the principle, to impose on them 300 years ago, the founder Jacob Oman.
Approaching the Amish was and remains a delicate matter; we should not be photographed at all – on the advice of Norman – so as not to deprive them of any culture, because they used to live in his world, and how it may have been excluded from any modern influences. Amish reject the use of new technologies, because in the Bible it is not explicitly mentioned. In their homes, you will look in vain for electrical appliances such as washing machines and refrigerators, and have radio, TV and telephone. No electricity at all – throw water in the house with the help of shtyftavyh laps, and then nagrevayuts gas.
When we came closer, we could detect the carts pulled by cows or wheelchairs, which are processed by the field; also not allowed to use power machinery; Amishav for the carriage drive motor may be used.
You're probably familiar with the picture Amishav controlling a horse gods that at first glance look like an old-fashioned means of transport; Now it is dominated by a gloomy black ordinary car. Passengers who are obviously trying to hide from view, also dressed in black. A simple dark clothing are usually stipulated: men may be buttons, and for women only folds. Orange and yellow color is not allowed. Married men wear beards, which we've seen a lot.
When we finally came to a village, a few children and an old man came upon us; they simply consume field work. Now there was a really funny thing. Marianne, who joined my sister began to speak to them in their own dialect, which started in Offenburg town near Strasbourg, where she was born.
Suddenly the fear of them had disappeared, and they surrounded our VW van, surrendering live conversation. Amish mainly speak on the "Pennsylvania Dutch", is a mixture of German dialects and English, which maybe people with the Palatinate could understand. As a result, the ice was broken and we were even invited home, where a woman – in a small round glasses and a whitish head covering to protect from the sun – kindly offered us homemade bread and cakes.
Lucky to be immersed in this ancient world, we have also provided invaluable facts: for example, in Amishav NO houses of worship, that is, they are going in the peasant house separated from other men and women; but the hierarchy does not exist. Weddings are usually marked on a Tuesday or Thursday, November. To have many children is considered to be a blessing; the average number of children is about 8-10 at something & # 39; S. Amishav population has doubled over the past 20 years. Currently, you can find a group Amishav about 20 US states. After you were born as the Amish, it does not necessarily mean that you have to be a member of the Amish. This is due to the fact that children are baptized, that is, they must decide on their own if they want to lead the kind of lifestyle. However, once they decide to become Amish aged 18-20, they are automatically chained to the rules and regulations of the community, which – apart from a few & # 39; and and a farm – one of the essential values and the car & # 39; EPA and power and money considered as non-essential aspects of life. In addition, the Amish in general practice non-aggression. They refuse to serve in the army, and refuse to take the oath.
Listening to the Amish, we felt so happy and contented, remembering also the famous movie "The only witness", which was filmed in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. This film reflects the clash Amishav with the outside world. In fact, no one among the Amish of actors, among them Harrison Ford – the most famous, and also not among the extras.
Unfortunately, we had to call a day later than the day and leave this unusual site, fully aware of the fact that this visitation was the event of the century. Upon his return to Nashville, Norman and we briskly repulsed our time, creating already plans how to spend the last day with Gaby and Marianne.
To this end, Norman and Mary gratefully made a common dinner in their home. Mary prepared the original southern dish, and we had a great time, talking about American culture, politics, religion and my personal development so far. Gaby and Marianne were once surprised by the spiritual religious procedure before starting to eat; This was mainly due to the Mary profession. On the other hand, Norman denies such ceremonies and did not seem out of & # 39; is a member of the church; he prefers simply to question the most and likes to be very critical. We should not forget about his strong interest in German literature and poetry, which he had collected quite a lot so far. It was very impressive us because we were able to share a variety of cross-cultural thoughts and ideas.
It is a pity that I could not get a few & # 39; nd owner, when I finished my studies in Vanderbiltse, although over the past 10 years I have tried several times to touch them.
In any case, life with family & # 39; host it belongs to the most interesting and valuable experience during my stay abroad. Not worth crying over spilled milk.
After I successfully used to the American way of life, my friend Rose, who has worked in international affairs at Vanderbilt, offered me something to think about the concept of & # 39; and the host for the next six months. She believed firmly that I am ideally suited to this new experience and choose a pair that has already proved to be excellent for this purpose. These two persons were resistant soft companions throughout the summer season.