Nights in Manhattan. The bright lights of Broadway. The fusion of fragrances emanating from the legion of restaurants. The cacophony of languages of millions of immigrants. The Big Apple – excitement and diversity down to its core.
So how the hell did I end up in Pennsylvania Dutch Country, hopelessly in love with my Amish husband Eli, married for four years with three kids and twins in the oven?
Good old revenge. I wouldn’t “play ball” with my boss so instead of being assigned to photograph Macy’s July 4th Fireworks I was banished for a month to cover the “Plain People’s” Summer County Fair.
What I thought was going to be a nightmare was quite the opposite. When the handsome, lusty Eli Fisher and I locked eyes, it was “Grossfeelich” – a “good feeling” from head to toe and all parts in between.
Being accepted into the Amish community, let alone marrying, is difficult but Eli and I had a few things going for us. I was a city girl but I wasn’t afraid to get my hands dirty. We weren’t kids. Most Amish were married before age 20; Eli and I were both 26.
But the clincher was the serendipitous aspect of my name: Menno Jakob.
Menno Simons and Jakob Ammann were the most revered men in the Amish religion. The elders were convinced I was descended from them when I was actually an Italian Jew from Canarsie.
That secret was ours alone for I was perfectly “oll recht” as far as Eli was concerned. I was his “little firecracker” .
Talking ‘bout fireworks, baby!