Saturday, December 20, 2008

Dipping Hole

I got tagged by Kathy. I'm supposed to go into my 4th picture folder, choose the 4th picture, tell you 4 things about it, then tag 4 more people. So here we go!

I grew up in Putney, Vermont. We lived in a 200-year old house, half-way up Putney Mountain. The dirt road on which we lived was plowed only up to our house in the winter - no one lived year 'round further up the road. Many years before we lived there, there had been a church across the road from our house. And a half-mile up that road is the Dipping Hole. It's a swimming hole dug into an incredibly icy-cold mountain stream where people were dunked during baptism ceremonies. And next to the Dipping Hole is the Dipping Hole Cemetery. I used to love to come here as a kid to look at the old headstones and get creeped out by the coffin-sized hollows in the earth where someone's casket had collapsed. We went there in 2004, on our way to a hike up Putney Mountain. Folder #4 is shots from that day (embiggen the pictures for much clearer detail).

1) It's easy to go right by the cemetery without noticing it. No one seems to maintain it. It's located at a 4-way intersection and when I was a kid, the road going by the cemetery was narrow and bumpy, and it was a cool place to take a walk. I particularly remember a house on that road that had it's own little burial plot - something quite common actually, in rural New England in the 18th and 19th centuries. Anyway, that road is now closed and impassable with a vehicle (you even have to be careful walking it):

2) Here are some shots of the headstones that are still legible. Time and acid rain have worn the inscriptions down on the stones that are carved from slate:

3) Obviously, the Dipping Hole Cemetery is an old one. The newest grave I could find was someone who died in 1877 (Charity Radway, born in 1796 - that was a very long life back then). The oldest one I spotted is 'Female Wilson' - birthdate unknown, date of death is April 6th, 1776.

4) This one isn't about the Dipping Hole but if you ever find yourself on I-91 near Putney (exit 4) between let's say April and the end of October (and you're not vegetarian) you have to stop by Curtis' All American Road Side BBQ. (And apparently his daughter just opened a place in Chester, VT that's open year 'round - check the link on his site!) Curtis was my next-door neighbor when I was a kid - he came to Putney as a migrant worker (picking apples) and stayed on. He has a pot-bellied pig who hangs out with him while he cooks (he tells her he's making chicken, not pork). When the pig gets bored, she just trots down the road back to his house. Curtis is quite the character, a great cook and a good guy who makes the best.bbq.ever. Go say Hi.

Well I'm not sure how well I stuck to the meme rules - since not all my facts were about the picture - but there you go. I'm tagging Tiggerr, Donna (who's busy with her visiting Honey right now but I'm hoping will do this later when she surfaces), Snidknits Cindy (when she gets back to India), and Toni, who seems to have her hands very full right now so I thought I'd try to tip her over the edge by handing this over to her. She sent me Christmas wishes recently. She might send me Christmas daggers after this one...

Our Bed This Morning

Is it any wonder we don't always sleep that well?

I'm kind of surprised that Miguel let the 2 dogs on the bed. He usually claims to hate them. He's either mellowing out or he's too senile to remember how horrible he usually thinks they are.


AlisonH said...

I remember a realtor quietly telling us we didn't want to buy a house in a particular neighborhood there in NH: that we would have no neighbors in winter, they were all snowbirds, and that the town refused to plow the street either--we'd have to make our way out to the main road by ourselves.

Given the 72" of snow, later... Um, yeah. So I'm glad you guys got it plowed to your house! I have to add--Putney's a beautiful town.

Nell said...

Neat! I really miss those really cool things about New England.