After we left the small, sweet, antique-y town of Bell Buckle the other day we slowly headed back towards home on narrow winding country roads.
We had seen two things on the way to Bell Buckle that I wanted to stop and look more closely at on the way home.
The first was a small herd of buffalo grazing in a field adjacent to a farmhouse in the middle of rolling hills and nowhere.
The second was a very old looking cemetery.
First stop was Old Salem cemetery only a couple of miles outside of Bell Buckle.
There is a cemetery almost immediately across the road from Old Salem that appears to be much newer, but this one, even as we were driving by it on our way to town looked to be much older and I was curious to stop and see what was there.
I was correct.
All of the grave sites were old, with almost all of those resting there having lived and died in the 1800's.
The winding and hilly two-lane road that we were on had no shoulders so LC pulled the truck into a driveway.
He and Jamie stayed with the truck and I quickly climbed up the hill towards Old Salem and then quickly wandered through the cemetery looking at the markers and names and dates inscribed on them..............
One interesting site that caught my attention while quickly wandering was this one.
Inscribed on the grave marker on the left was that the person was the "consort" of the person buried to the right.
It was a totally unexpected word in the context of the time period in this very southern rural setting............
As we had made our way towards Bell Buckle earlier in the day both LC and I were surprised to see a handful of buffalo grazing in a field, and we resolved to stop on the way home to take pictures of these huge and prehistoric looking beasts.
Wonderful beasts that we had not seen since leaving Wyoming.
By the time we drove back that way the buffalo had moved into an adjoining smaller field.
There were no driveways close to them to pull in to and still no shoulder along the side of the narrow two-laner to pull on to.
LC stopped the truck in the middle of the road and watched for oncoming traffic while I quickly snapped these pictures from inside the vehicle.
Not great pictures unfortunately and snapped in a hurry through the tall grass, but it was still wonderful and completely unexpected to run into these animals.
Both LC and I miss the elk and buffalo and wild horses and big horn sheep that were so abundant in and around Cody, and we smiled to each other at our completely unexpected find in rural Tennessee.............
Not long after leaving the buffalo our GPS began surprisingly to direct us onto even more winding and narrow and off-the-beaten-path country roads.
We ignore our GPS often but on that day, and in no hurry to get home, we followed "his" directions and were increasingly curious to see where our electronic gadget would take us.
We had no idea where we were headed and I don't think I could replicate the route again without help, but (confident that we would eventually find our way home) on this day we did not really care.
We were completely surrounded by increasing warmth, uninterrupted blue sky, farmland and hills and the far away plateau.
We stopped (again in the middle of a very quiet winding country road) so that I could take pictures of cattle and pond.
It was a lovely place.
It was a very quiet place, and it was easy at that very moment to forget that we were now living in a too-populated state.
There are many places to find quiet and for that I am grateful............
After crossing over a bridge we immediately pulled into a driveway that led down to the river.
These steps at the end of the driveway led right down to the water.
After visiting Bell Buckle and cemeteries and buffalo and cattle and ponds and rivers, we did eventually find our way home.................
Everybody should have his personal sounds to listen for - sounds that will make him exhilarated and alive or quite and calm.... One of the greatest sounds of them all - and to me it is a sound - is utter, complete silence...........Andre Kostelanetz