Friday, October 16, 2009

My Road in Cobb County, Ga. (Part 2 of 2)

This is a continuation of my post of October 9th where I explained that my road passes through the Kennesaw Civil War National Battlefield Park. Below is a postcard showing this park –

About 2 miles from the park, going toward our house, is an old farm which has been on this road since before the Civil War. In 1993 this farm, called Lake Laura Gardens, was awarded the Centennial Heritage Farm Award by the State of Georgia. The Centennial Heritage Farm Award honors farms owned by members of the same family for 100 years or more and listed in the National Register of Historic Places. A “Georgia Centennial Farm” marker is on the grounds.

Click on the pictures to enlarge them

Troy, the owner, is 89 years old and still works in the field. He is tall with piercing blue eyes. He told us how the original farm was burned down in 1864 when General T. Sherman’s troops passed by. During the war Troy’s ancestor lived in a cabin in the back of the field, then as soon as the war was over he and his neighbors built a new house, in 1865. The hardest part was to obtain nails Troy told us. Troy was a pilot in World War II. He was stationed in England near the English Channel for 1 year 3 months. He flew to and over Normandy on D Day and told me that it was a very foggy day. It is chilling to hear him talk about his 359 combat hours during the war and it seems so far away from his peaceful gardens. Troy is a proud Democrat and if you have the time he will tell you why the Iraq war was started irresponsibly and under false pretenses (and illegally) by President Bush resulting in our economic problems today. He has a nice fig tree facing our road – they are of the Celeste figs variety - my figs are of the Brown Turkey variety. Below are pictures of Troy and his fields and my husband picking some figs.

When we moved to this road in Cobb County most of the houses were small and more of a “vintage” style. But as time went by the fields were sold and McMansions started to appear. For example looking to the right of our house, about 3 houses up is this house below which is quite old and basic.

If you look down to the left from our house, the site welcoming us is still a country type scene and there are cattle in some of the fields.

But on our side of the road, our next door neighbors, if you can call this house that, since it is about ¼ mile down the road is the house below with many extra buildings in the back. We do not know who has been living there for the last fifteen years (they have not come over yet.)

Continuing down our road, these are the next two houses that can be seen. The creek near these houses was flooded during the last bad Georgia flood and the road was closed starting from in front of our house. I enclose a picture of the flooded field below and the way it looks today, with the banks eroded – note the same red barn in the bottom two pictures.

Further down my road there are more houses, not very close together, but of different styles and ages. Here is an old one by the look of its trees –

And here is an assortment of other houses near my road. Obviously the Cobb County Planning Commission has let everyone built anything they wished - an estate next to an old country cabin with the ever present kudzu vine in between. What? A building code in Cobb County? When I think about my mother who had to wait one year to get the OK from her suburban town near Paris to build a small one room addition to the back of her house….but that was in France, where building codes are very strict.

Don't forget to click to on the photos to enlarge them

As we turn around and go back down the road toward my house I see all the houses that have become very familiar because I have driven by them for years. But I do not know the people who live in them. The neighbors we knew passed away or moved away. From our house we see no one but the trees and it is very private. This is good because during the rush hours the road now has vehicles bumper to bumper for miles. When we moved here there were not many houses and the battlefield park had been finished and inaugurated by the park service only six year before.

Since the advent of Newt Gingrich – Cobb County is his district – many rich super Conservative Christians have been moving in or building the mega houses. Another church has been built on my road a couple of years ago as well as an expensive and exclusive strict Christian private school. They purchased 40 acres to build their large dominion high school and advertize “The mission of our High School is to glorify God as we prepare students in mind, body, and spirit to meet life's challenges with a Christ-centered Biblical worldview and with Christ-centered academic, moral and spiritual instruction.” I wonder how an evangelical and selective “biblical worldview” without a broad and tolerant religious inclusion is going to prepare these students for the international challenges needed for tomorrow when 7 or more out of 10 people in the world are not Christians (although if you count the practicing Christians only the figure would be closer to 2 out of 10 – including all the various Christian denominations.) One report I read stated that 42% of evangelical Christian schools in the US failed to meet the standards in promoting tolerance and respect for other cultures and faiths. This school is less than a mile away and when I try to drive out of my driveway now I have to be very careful of all their huge SUV zipping by my home before I can access the road. Yes the community has changed and it has changed my road. It is not longer Rural Route No. 4.

In spite of all the building and “progress” just down my road a little family produce store, which was there when we arrived years ago, has survived. We can still walk to it to buy fresh fruits and vegetables.


Life goes on within and without you. -the Beatles.


""°o.O Nancy O.o°"" said...

*** Hello Vagabonde ! ***

Voilà ! je viens de faire un tour en Amérique sans même bouger de mon siège en Afrique !!!
Grâce à internet et surtout grâce à ton talent pour faire un blog bien construit, complet, bien expliqué et bien illustré (tes photos sont encore très belles aujourd'hui !) ... grâce à tout cela je découvre là où tu vis et ce que tu peux voir.

*** BRAVO et MERCI VAGABONDE !!!! j'aime venir chez toi et tu as raison ... il y a une vie en dehors du blog aussi ! ;o) ***

claude said...

Grâce à toi, je connais mieux ta route maintenant. Je trouve que les maisons à colonnes sont bien belles.
Je voudrais dire un tout spécial et grand merci à Troy d'avoir participé à la bataille de Normandie qui fut le commencement de la libération de la France.
L'étal de fruits et de légumes, surtout avec les citrouilles, est très accueillant.
Merci pour cet excellent post, Vagabonde !

Jinksy said...

Don't you live in a fascinating place? I can't begin to imagine being 1/4 mile away from a neighbour - though I could wish my immediate ones anywhere but next door!
Loved you local store photo, too... just a riot of colour.

DJan said...

I love the fact that your road has such diversity, including the Christian school that seems to have none.

The houses are all over the place, from quaint to enormous. And the fact that you have TRAFFIC JAMS all the way out in the country amazes me.

I like that you started and ended the post with the country store, not to mention all the pumpkins. I truly enjoyed the trip down your road. It's always a pleasure to see that you have a new post!

Vicki Lane said...

Our rural county is seeing similar change -- but as it's mountainous, many of the worst extravagances are tucked away in hidden coves -- out of sight, thank goodness!

Darlene said...

You live in a beautiful area and it's a shame that the intolerant Christian right are taking over your part of the country. I'll bet that this doesn't make Troy very happy.

It's too bad the recent flood didn't drive out all of those radical so-called Christians. I imagine their houses were well above the water line since they probably had the best architects draw up the plans for their mega mansions.

I love your pictures. You are a superb photographer and it makes it so easy to visualize the areas you visit and live in.

I do love the beautiful antebellum house in the lower left hand corner. Or maybe it is a new reproduction of a plantation house. It looks like Tara.

Jenn Jilks said...

We live in a town of 650. (No overpopulation issues here!) In summer, it swells to 8,000, but we love the shoulder seasons (June/Sept.!).

Great shots. I understand the 'neighbour' thing. Our neighbours across the lake seemed to have lost their raft, but we do not know them and couldn't let them know. I saw it drifting but could do nothing.

Happy Fall! Thanks for visiting My Muskoka.

Baino said...

I love the way you lot go berserk over Halloween! So much pumpkinry! And they're so perfectly shaped and coloured! And he's quite right about Bush and his cronies who misinformed the world to the point that we joined the Coalition of the Willing, based on a lie! Terrible man should be brought to account. And your new "McMansions" are so so similar to the houses being built at the back of my five acre property. We used to live in vegetable producing country but now it's just suburban sprawl, we're the last enclave of rural life close to the CBD, very sad. My horses have had to get used to the sound of hoons and sirens. Wonderful walk through your neighbourhood. I'm so happy, I got a new camera lens for my birthday and it's superb! And as John Lennon said, "Life is what happens while you're making other plans!" So true! Have a lovely weekend.

NanouB said...


je t'ai découverte sur un blog amie ou je suis régulièrement
Le nom de Géorgie m'a attiré et j'y découvre un très beau blog et pleins de photos qui donnent envie de découvrir ce pays

alors si tu veux bien j'y revendrai

Anonymous said...

j'arrive de mon deuxième blog car Clara et nanou c'est moi sous deux blogs différents...
Je m'appelle nanou et te souhaite un bon WE sous le ciel de Géorgie

Ruth said...

That was an interesting stroll/drive. Building code? Ha. We in the U.S. would never tolerate such a thing. You go to the UK, and the rolling countryside is uncluttered with strip malls. Americans go to enjoy it. Yet they don't want to restrict anything here, so there is freedom to clutter up the landscape. It drives me nuts.

And tolerance - your paragraph about Christian schools, tolerance and all is brilliant, right down to the SUVs. That drives me nuts too. The country is becoming so ugly in its divisiveness, I wonder what we will look like ten years from now.

I wish you a hearty bon voyage and look forward to your return.

wenn said...

love the pumpkins..

Friko said...

Vagabonde, a splendid place on the face of it, but I can see that you may find it difficult to fit in and make friends.

Kenza said...

Ma chère Vagabonde, je viens répondre à ta question et reviendrai plus tard dans la soirée pour lire tranquillement tes derniers posts.
Non seulement je connais l'écrivain, mais j'ai rencontré Tahar Ben Jelloun plusieurs fois.
C'est notre Goncourt marocain!!! Il a obtenu ce très grand prix français en 1987 pour "La nuit sacrée".
J'ai lu pratiquement tous ses livres, et mon préféré est un roman de ses débuts: "Moha le fou, Moha le sage". A l'époque, Tahar Ben Jelloun n'avait pas encore la renommée qu'il a aujourd'hui. Un pur chef-d’œuvre!
Je te souhaite donc une bonne lecture, tu me diras ce que tu en penses...
Très belle soirée et très bon dimanche

alaine@éclectique said...

Once again, what a lovely place you live in. I could sit and listen to Troy and his stories for hours. Also in full agreeance about the Iraq war.

Shammickite said...

The rural back roads in my neighbourhood are suffering the same fate. Roads that were formerly gravel or dirt are being paved, and little homesteads are disappearing, giving way to large mansions. I went past a huge house today, partly finished, and has been unfinished for the past 2 years as the owners ran out of money!
However, your area looks charming... and I love the colors of the wooded hills in the distance.

OldLady Of The Hills said...

It certainly is BEAUTIFUL Country.....I loved seeing all your pictures and your commentary too. It sounds like The Evangelical Christians do not teach true tolerence, and that is pretty scary to me.
There is so much American History there with this being an important Battlefield. LOVED the picture of your 89 year old neighbor still working the fields, and seeming to have a true understanding of the illegality of the Iraq war....He is quite a man having fought in

Jenn Jilks said...

Woo hoo! You go, girl!

My kinda post. Beautiful colours (yay fall!), commentary on closed minds, and an open spirit. So many bloggers I would love to meet!

Bonnie Zieman, M.Ed. said...

It's always a shame when a lovely, historic area becomes 'gentrified' - it seems to kill all community spirit. Then if on top of it they are building their own schools with a very specific agenda . . . I become quite concerned when anyone has too fundamentalist-a-stance. There is then no room for diversity, tolerance, questions, or negotiation. How can you argue of negotiate with those who possess the truth and have 'god' on their side. Hmmmmmm sounds like trying to deal with Al Quaeda.

rauf said...

as we claim to be evolved,i expect our minds to get broader and be more tolerant. This is not happening Vagabonde. It is sad. There are 34,000 different factions within Christianity and hundreds in Hinduism which was supposed to be the most tolerant of all, but evil cast system and gross injustice arising out of it Results in communal riots, killing and destruction. Within Islam people are killing each other along with those who don't agree with them. Those who don't agree forms the whole world perhaps they would kill the entire population. Still they will not be happy.

The roads are beautiful Vagabonde, We still don't seem to understand what 'progress' really is. In India we are confused, we do not know what to be developed and what to be left alone.

Marguerite said...

Such a lovely road with such beautiful scenery. Your neighbor reminds me of my Dad, who will be 88 in Nov. and is still going strong! I believe that being active is the key to staying young in mind and in body. Great photos and healthy looking kudzu, too. Bon voyage, cher!

Dutchbaby said...

Thanks for the tour of your neck of the woods. I enjoyed reading about Troy and his politics and those pumpkins looks so festive!

Reader Wil said...

Je vous remercie de votre visite, oui je suis en France maintenant chez mes amis! Je vous souhaite aussi un bon temps en France à la semaine prochaine!

Anonymous said...

alors hâte de te retrouver chez toi et chez moi

bon séjour dans notre beau pays

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