Saturday, September 24, 2011

Madison, IN

The little town of Madison is lovely. Our first day the weather was misty and rainy. Winds were high. In warsaw we had met Jeff who told us of the hollow and Paul, who owns the place now. The boat was worse than it ever had been, due to the storms. There was mud everywhere and all of our things in a jumble. We called up Jeff right before the highway bridge, "They pulled the public dock out of the water" "Where should we go?"

We maneuvered to a paved landing near a campground where Jeff pulled up in a yellow side car, paul following him, and somehow my friend traveling across country from LA followed paul in a mini cooper. We made all the introductions and called the Lighthouse cafe marina then headed down to dock. Evan, my friend coming from californina, braved the mist, while paul and I drove.

"Paul, now I realize why everyone looks and points at us." This was the first time I saw the raft underway with out me! We are this little piece of junk inching down a big stormy river hundreds of miles. 

Evan went on his way back to my home city of Philadelphia, I thought about going with him. BUT here I am still on this drifting dock with my two chickens.

Paul and I went out to lunch and then he gave me a full tour of Madison, including Amy and Jane's barbershop. We had a couple beers as I picked away at the banjo on the wall.

The next day, I packed my little hens a lunch and put them in Jane's coop. First day with other hens! They all ganged up on my poor little sweat hearts and we had to separate them. They were both happy and taken care of once the separate coop was shut. With them taken care of, we headed down to the hollow. There is a slippery mile hike down to Pauls little house on the hillside. No heat, No electric, No running water, but everything you could need or want. His shelves were stacked with useful books, kitchen full of food, tall fire wood pile, and a lovely place to sit and watch the woods. 

The innovation of the place and hard work is what makes payne hollow beautiful. The hubbards are gone, but the way of life is not dead. Payne hollow is alive because of Paul. There is no entrance fee. There is no silk rope and "do not touch" sign. There is a warm hearth and duch oven corn. Stir your soup with Anna hubbard's spoon, because that is what it was made for. The chairs are sat in, and the beautiful wood working is used.

Calmed from the visit to the hollow, we climbed the hill and went over to jane's house.. I let the lady's out to peck in the grass, and with a full belly of jane's jumbulia, went to my little boat proud of the adventure and everything simple river life stands for.

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