Putney, Vt. farm

Travel


Much like my site title suggests, I rather live life in simplicity if given a choice. While attending a two-month intensive writing workshop in Putney, Vt., I found myself falling in love with the eternal fields and mountains. During these months, I had no computer or Internet connection of any sort. Cell phones? No way. Cell phones can't even get signal on top of the mountain that the Putney School resides on. I'm not going to lie - I had withdrawals. Eye-twitching withdrawals. Badly. I love computers and I love technology. Coping with the lack of technology was anything but easy for me.

After a while of living without technology I would have then considered a necessity to everyday life, I realized how much more I appreciated my surroundings. Without the distractions of the computer or phone, I felt more alert and connected with not only my environment but the people around me. I feel like we overlook beauty due to our fascination with technology. Wow - I can't believe I'm the one saying this of all people. I, being the infamous computer geek, would shockingly choose to visit Putney, Vermont again over any other place.

Madame Sherri's Castle in Putney, Vt. Putney may be one of the simplest of places I've been to but also the most charming. The "downtown" area consists of nothing more than a bank, a gas station, a general store, a hot dog stand, a '50s-esque cafe "The Putney Diner" where all of the locals meet up for breakfast and converse, and the book store. There aren't any commercial buildings. Every shop, powdered with dandelions in the nearby grass, is owned by a member of the town.

Significant locations in Putney include the Putney School, a boarding school tucked away upon the foothills of the Green Mountains. The school has its own dairy farm and prides itself in its music and the arts programs. Over the summer, I attended an intensive writing workshop where the 15 participants wrote for eight hours or more a day in the form of creative writing, ranging from narratives to poetry. The Putney School has events open to the public constantly where students showcase their latest work. Among the most popular of events is the Harvest Festival that lures thousands of locals to the school every year during the farm's first harvest.

A quirky town, Putney hosts stunning nature settings, including brooks, waterfalls, and endless forests. The Madame Sherri Forest is an example of Putney's quirkiness. Madame Antoinette Sherri, a costume designer for the Ziegfield Follies in the 1920s, created an eccentric summer house "Madame Sherri's Castle" in the forest after the death of her husband. Later, Madame Sherri chose to live in this castle for 30 years. Exploring the remnants of her home also provides the chance to wander around the Indian Pond and discover trails. In Putney, it seems as though whenever you wander off the dirt road, you find a new landmark within the forests.

Brattleboro, Vt. The town of Brattleboro rests nearly 15 to 20 minutes from Putney. For those who prefer shopping to wandering nature trails, it has many thrift stores overflowing with vintage finds and hipster coffee shops underground. It's just as charming as Putney with its remnants of graffiti and rustic brick buildings. Much like the rest of Vermont, it's a quiet place for the most part which in my opinion, is bliss - not only can you traipse through forest paths without noisiness, but you can do the same in a shopping district.

You should know by now that I'm an uber computer addict - my friends say I was born with a laptop attached to my fingertips. I'm always typing or researching a topic of interest via the Internet. Yet interestingly enough, I find myself most serene when in Putney, either writing a poem inspired by some autumn scene in front of me or listening to the life of nature nearby, the trickling of the springs and the humming of bugs drunk on the nearby raspberries.