Foyer > Where I live

The view from my house

the view from my house

Some other pictures of the pond here

And one day... the pond was gone

Nature's Etch-A-Sketch

I live in Vermont. Vermont is a small state located in the Northeast corner of the United States of America, American continent, Planet Earth. My house is at the end of a one-lane dirt road. We live on a beaver pond which is about thirty years old according to my neighbors. Thirty years ago, beavers moved in and began damming up Lord's Brook. They have continued their work for thirty years and now this whole section of Lord's Brook, down through the tiny valley where I live, is a series of ponds of which this is the largest. The beavers still live here, we see them in the early morning or late evening swimming in the pond. Still working, still expanding their beaver empire.

Otters live here too, they are a lot of fun to watch but you have to be very quiet and still. Otters are wary creatures. We see a lot of White-tailed deer. That large pine tree in the middle marks the crossing place of several deer trails. Deer are very habitual animals, they go the same way every time and wear trails through the woods. We have a lot of coyote. We do not see them often but their tracks in the snow in the winter tell us that they pass very close to our house on the way to the pond to drink and they pass often. We also have moose and bear. There are logging roads that continue on through the woods after the passable road ends, just beyond our house, and we have found bear sign walking those logging roads. I've found moose tracks in the driveway and moose droppings next to our picnic table. Hard to believe I missed seeing something as big as a moose in the yard!

Vermont is a lovely place in the summer. It's lovely in the winter too, but very different, quite cold with a lot of snow. Winters are long and summers are short. It is said of Vermont that we have "Nine months of winter and three months of very poor sledding!"

It's a very special place to live. Vermont has a history of independence, self-reliance and frugality. But it is also a place where neighbors depend on each other which is natural in a place where up until fifty or so years ago, people were isolated from the larger world in a climate which can be harsh. Vermont still has that tradition of neighbors helping each other. It also has a long tradition of tolerance of differences. This tradition served it well a few years ago when after long and sometimes divisive debate, debates which took place in nearly every city, town and village, Vermont became the first state in the nation to pass a civil union law which gives gay men and women the right to enter into legal union with the one they love.

I am a transplant to Vermont, I was not born here and so will never be able to be a "Vermonter". But I have lived here long enough so that I no longer am called a "flatlander", a contemptuous term applied to those who have just arrived and do not know Vermont ways. Flatlanders want paved roads and curbside trash pickup. Flatlanders close their land to hunting and do not know their neighbors names nor care.

I love Vermont. I love it with a passion which sometimes surprises me. There is nowhere that I would rather live than here in this little corner of God's paradise which we call Earth.
The Golden Telephone

Foyer > Where I live