I mentioned in my previous edition (Amish Paradise - linked below), that I sometimes wonder what it's like to go from living a simple Amish life to the crazy modern tech world that any shopping has to involve.
I have three examples of Amish coming into our supermarket in Northern Wisconsin and adjusting extremely well!
(Amish buggies in a city - photo by Joe Shlabotnik - Flickr)
For most people, these days, paper checks are nothing more than that - a piece of paper. When it gets fed through the machine in the store, it is converted to an electronic transfer (EFT) and then we hand back the piece of paper. Sometimes, however, the EFT isn't accepted immediately. We would have to ask for a form of ID - usually a driver's license. This was usually because an account was too new or they'd spent in an unusual way. It's meant to catch fraud, but, of course, 99% of the time, it's simply an inconvenience of our modern age.
Of course, most Amish do not have a driver's license or other form of government ID.
This means that for them, we would keep the paper check and process it the old-fashioned way.
Every once in awhile, however, I would have some Amish come through my line who did have a government ID card. So, I got into the habit of actually asking and not assuming because these people would always surprise me!
Boys and Cars!
The supermarket I worked for had a couple of kids' carts that generally featured a car with two steering wheels (presumably to keep the kids from squabbling over who got to drive.)
When the Amish boys got into one of these (uncommon - they usually didn't use them), they had no issues pretending they were driving their car, just the same as any ordinary boy! (I didn't see girls in this, so I can't comment on them.)
Grandpa Loves Tech!
This is probably the one that thrilled me the most when I was supervising the check-outs. One of the older gentlemen would come through the self-checkouts! He needed help at one point, but had no problems with learning how to use this technology. I just thought it was super cute and I loved teaching this "old dog" how to do a "new trick!"
I apologize if anyone is offended by me covering the Amish in this light. I am not at all prejudiced and loved working with these folks - often going out of my way to help them in the supermarket, most notably when a young woman was looking for an herbal remedy that she could take while breastfeeding - can't completely remember the situation, but I was honored to be able to help.
I would love to spend some time with their women and learn their healing arts as I know they have a lot to teach us. Yes, we don't want to completely cut out modern medicine, but old practices have worked for 100s or 1000s of years and are worth learning as well!
This is a freewrite of experiences in my worklife. No real names are used to protect both the guilty and the innocent.
author/designer at A'mara Books
photographer/graphic artist for Viking Visual
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