Check yesterday's post for part I of this series. Living on the plains of Kansas requires a degree of self-sufficiency whether one is Amish or not. But the area's stubbornly arable land and far-from-anywhere location brings out the natural self-sufficiency in the Plain people of the Plains.
Many of the Amish living around the town of Partridge are dairy farmers which dovetails well with Kansas being a "raw milk" state. It is perfectly legal to buy and sell raw milk in the Sunflower State, so Amish-run milk sheds like this one at Glass Springs Dairy do a brisk business. Many of the milk shacks operate on an honor system basis, where customers leave payment and pick up their own milk.
Meals are scratch made and simple, more in line with traditional Amish cooking. Tables are full with homemade bread, home-canned vegetables,and locally raised and butchered meats. Pleasures are simple and earthy: hunting, fishing, gathering wild berries on the prairie, and putting together puzzles and board-games on cold winter nights.
The more progressive Beachy Amish Mennonite congregations and the conservative horse-and-buggy churches have cordial, cooperative relationships. And the horse-and-buggy Amish are a bit more open here. There is a "community building", a place where church functions - but not church services - are held. Worship services are still held in homes, but the community building is a perfect for a potluck or youth program. I'll have more in the months ahead from this unique, quiet settlement. Below is a the open, empty road, golden in a Kansas sunrise near the town of Partridge.