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We are just finishing up a ten day visit to my mother in Vermont which has been filled with several visits to Morgan and Vivien’s great aunt Les and uncle Jax house (including pool and poodle to play with), running about in the woods at their Gramma’s house and playing with clay for days on end. I think those have been the highlights for them.

Even before any of that happened, however, on our first day, Morgan, who is very aware that we are on a three year posting to America, said to me, “I want to stay here for three years not in America.” While her comment was based on the fact that we are visiting her Gramma, whom she adores and also on the fact that her grasp of the American geography and all that it includes is poor, she also had a point.

My mother and aunt Les, often call  Vermont the People’s Republic of Vermont  referring to the fact that Vermont is a bit different than other parts of America. There are facts that make Vermont different:

It is the only American state whose capital city does not have a McDonalds, something Vermonters are quite proud of, as they should be.

Since the 60s and 70s it has been a consistently liberal state; was the first to legally recognize civil unions and the state (second only to Hawaii) to win the most votes for Obama.

As usual, this political foundation influences thinking through out the small (625,000) population. There is an interesting mix of old conservative Vermonters, first generation hippies and, what I consider nouveau hippies. Its a place where Raw-milk is freely advertised on the side of the road, there are no bill boards and, at least for us visitors, everyone seems to be enjoying themselves, as they should in such a lovely place.

We certainly enjoyed the good life ourselves!

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Until next time, Vermont!

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