The Long Way Home


This is How I Imagine Home
October 10, 2012, 5:32 AM
Filed under: Pennsylvania | Tags: , , , , , ,

at the mahoning dam

Jeff and I spent Sunday the 30th visiting our friends Judi and Wayne at their farm in Armstrong County. The farm is out of GPS range, so we followed Judi’s hand-drawn map and written instructions, excited that we were going deeper off the city grid. Pittsburgh is one of those places where you don’t have to drive too far to be out in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by trees, lost in winding dirt roads with no signs. We ate homemade applesauce and pulled pork for lunch while  listening to the cows across the fields,  and later, took a drive through a torrential downpour in the little town of Dayton. We learned the secret to spotting Amish houses (one tied-back curtain swag framing plain white windows), marveled over the turban-shaped wasps’ nest hanging from a tree in the driveway and made friends with Bobcat, a one-eyed, no-tailed kitten that Jeff still keeps talking about adopting. Judi told me stories about working at Dairy Queen with my mother when they were younger. It means a lot when others talk about her without fear of upsetting me. I find it comforting, like the smell of wet leaves and wood smoke, or the solace of early darkness.

this is how i imagine home

wayne and jeff were behind me in the garden picking peppers and tomatoes

dayton train station – some of the papers dated from the early 1980s

jeff inside the train depot

after the storm: a field on judi and wayne’s farm

cold autumn sky

sunset over open fields

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13 Comments so far
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“It means a lot when others talk about her without fear of upsetting me. I find it comforting, like the smell of wet leaves and wood smoke, or the solace of early darkness.”

How true, and how wise of Judi to see that was what you needed. Beautiful.

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Comment by thevintagetraveler

thanks, lizzie – I feel lucky to know Judi and have a place to go when I need comfort.

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Comment by Lisa

[…] This is How I Imagine Home […]

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Pingback by Haunted Film « The Long Way Home

this is just beautiful. your pictures and your words.

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Comment by naimavanswol

that’s so nice – thank you!

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Comment by Lisa

The photos are like paintings and linger in the eye. I just love the text–so poetic! Its a long way home indeed, but you are getting there, Lisa. Many thanks, Michael

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Comment by Michael Williamson

Hi Michael, Thanks for your kind words. I felt like being out there in country was like walking into paintings – Polaroid film seemed the best way to capture that feeling.

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Comment by Lisa

I fantastic afternoon! I’d love to live way out, but still close to the city. We’ll have to go back for a visit soon!

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Comment by jeff

I know you would – surrounded by heaps of scraps and dirt and stray cats!

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Comment by Lisa

I am diggin’ that train station! toot toot!

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Comment by Bill

thought you’d love it – the area is pretty isolated and has a lot of old buildings like this.

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Comment by Lisa

I love you are getting to experience some nostalgia with those who knew her best. What an amazing journey. I am anxious to see what else you discover. The hopscotch board is fantastic, by the way.

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Comment by motherblue212

i know, i felt really lucky that judi and i have connected and she was so kind to invite us out to her home. thanks for the photo comment too – you and dave and jack need to take a drive out this way. the area is beautiful, it’s not too far from the city (about an hour). a great day trip.

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Comment by Lisa




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