HONK IF YOU ARE AMISH
That is meant to be sort of a joke for you see most Amish buggies and wagons don’t have horns on them. However I think the real intent of this “non-joke” is to try to get those Amish folks who have cars they keep hidden in the daytime and only take them out at night to be caught off guard and get them to honk if they see the bumper sticker which says this. I have something in mind concerning riding our trikes around horses, but before getting to it I want to say this about the Amish … The really sad part of it all is they are in legalistic bondage of their own making and don’t even realize it. They live without modern conveniences thinking that in doing so it is pleasing to God and makes them more acceptable to Him. They fail to understand that God does not care about the things we have. What He cares about is the things that have us. He is a jealous God and is quite insistent on having first place in our hearts and lives. And He deserves no less. And just like the Israelites the Amish find ways to “cheat” and get around some of their man made regulations. It is really quite laughable. They just don’t “get it”. Some of the stuff they engage in is superstitious. They can’t have electricity or “landline telephones” because it comes into their homes via wires. And wires are a no no because they are told that devil can enter their house thru wires. (How ridiculous!) Yet they can have gasoline engine driven generators, solar panels, cell phones, etc. as there are no wires coming into their homes from the outside world. They can’t have electric motors so they use pneumatic motors ran off of an air compressor powered by a gasoline generator. They need to spend more time prayerfully reading God’s Word (the bible) for enlightenment and understanding instead of blindly following their man made religion. Regardless of what any of us are doing in our lives there is nothing more important than our eternal souls and whether or not we miss out on God’s great love for us and what He has for us thru Jesus Christ. You can read more about it HERE.
Anyway, being in northern Indiana I don’t have far to go to encounter Amish people and their horses and buggies, etc. And occasionally I do go riding out in “Amish country” where I contend with the horrible conditions of the roads that they have destroyed with their wagons, etc. I used to have some pictures of this, but alas, I seem to have lost them. Anyway, here is one I found online. However, it is not really a bad surface like I am talking about.
And then there is the problem with horse manure all over the place. That is always so nice to deal with too. I really don’t understand how they get away with any of this. I think lawmakers need to crack down on them and force them to do something about the horse manure and destroying the roads. Non Amish folks are required to use catch devices with horses and so should the Amish. Also if they are going to insist on a lifestyle where they destroy the roads taxpayers paid for they ought to have to pay a special tax to repair them since they alone are doing the damage. Those of us who drive our cars and trucks on those roads deal with damage occurring to our vehicles as a result of the bad road surfaces. But that is not what I am here to write about just now. I just had to get it off my chest so to speak.
Mixing it up with motor vehicle traffic is always a great concern and it is usually the Amish folks and the horses that come out on the losing end. It is a bad situation. But again, that is not what I want to address here. As cyclists we want others to “Share the Road” and all of us need to share the road with whoever is out there regardless of what we are driving or riding.
What I do want to talk about is some concerns we cyclists need to be aware of if we find ourselves riding and sharing the road with these folks. Horses can be skiddish and frighten when they encounter certain things. I have discovered that my flashing headlight often upsets them and can cause them to rear up and go crazy. In doing so they greatly endanger themselves, the Amish people on the buggies/wagons, anyone nearby which includes us. I had one horse go totally out of control and the Amishman struggled trying to get the horse to settle down. He ended up having the horse pull off the road into the driveway of another Amish farm and kept going a ways down the lane away from me. I felt bad that I had caused this. I could not help but think … what if that buggy would have been filled with young children or women who didn’t have the experience and expertise that the Amishman had. That scene could have turned out much different … even tragic. So now when I go riding out in Amish countryside and see a horse and buggy/wagon coming toward me I reach out and turn my headlight off until I get passed them. It definitely has helped eliminate this scenario from being repeated. I would say that there can be other problems our trikes can cause … such as our safety flags or just the sight of something horses are not familiar with, but so far I have not seen any get too out of shape over anything other than my flashing headlight. I have had them come up behind me and pass me where my flashing taillights have been on, but that hasn’t seemed to disturb them.