Anna's Healing

Free Anna's Healing by Vannetta Chapman

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Authors: Vannetta Chapman
passing outside their window.
    â€œDoes that mean you don’t want to talk about it? Or you have nothing to say?”
    Anna laughed. “You ask more questions than I do, which I didn’t know was possible.”
    â€œI’m a reporter. I’m supposed to ask questions. It helps when you’re trying to get information from folks for an article. Of course, some people I interview actually want to be in the paper. It’s hard to get them to stop talking.”
    â€œNot so much with the Amish.”
    â€œNot so much…” The afternoon had turned out better than Chloe could have imagined. She never would have found Amish women who sold quilts for additional income on her own unless she’d passed their roadside sign by sheer luck.
    â€œExplain to me why there isn’t a quilt shop located somewhere central that these women could sell their quilts from. Somewhere Englischers could find.”
    Anna shrugged. “If Gotte wants them to sell…”
    â€œHe’ll bring folks down their lane? Come on now.”
    Anna only smiled.
    Chloe was learning that her new Amish friend wasn’t easily offended. She was surprised at how comfortable she felt with Anna. There had been no awkward silences or dead-end topics, though at times—like now—Anna didn’t exactly offer volumes of information.
    â€œIf there was a central shop—”
    â€œBut there’s not.”
    â€œIf there were, it would bring more tourists and more quilts would sell. Mrs. Troyer…”
    â€œOur bishop’s wife.”
    â€œShe had more than a dozen beautiful quilts completed. I’m sure plenty of woman would love to have those in their home. They would sell quickly if anyone knew about them.”
    â€œWho would work at this shop?” Anna cornered herself in the car seat so she could face Chloe.
    She certainly seemed comfortable riding in the car. Chloe had no idea why she had worried that this might be her first time, that she might not know how to work the seat belt. She realized suddenly that many of her thoughts about the Amish were stereotypes. As a reporter, she should have known better.
    â€œThat would depend on how many women you had contributing quilts. If you had at least twelve, I suppose each woman could spend half a day—”
    â€œAmish women don’t work outside the home.”
    â€œNever?”
    â€œThey don’t if they’re married. For one thing, there’s too much for them to do at home. There’s the cooking and cleaning and raising of the younger kinner .”
    â€œ Kinner ?”
    â€œChildren.”
    â€œWhat about when they’re older? When the kinner are gone?”
    â€œStill there is much to do—helping with the grandkinner . Plus allof the work on a farm remains the same. Look at my aenti . She has no children, and still the work is almost too much for her. At least in big families the children grow older and can help.”
    â€œIs that why you came? To help her?”
    Anna shook her head and popped her finger joints one by one. A nervous gesture? Maybe. Chloe turned the subject back to the prospective quilt shop.
    â€œWhat about younger women, like you?”
    â€œMost women my age are married already and expecting their first boppli .”
    â€œReally?”
    â€œYes. Why would you be surprised at that?”
    â€œWell, you’re not so old. Probably younger than I am.”
    â€œTwenty-four.” Anna again popped the index finger on her left hand.
    If Chloe didn’t stay away from sensitive subjects, the girl was going to have an early case of arthritis. “I’m thirty-two.”
    â€œAnd not married?” As soon as she said that, Anna covered her mouth as if she wanted to snatch the words back.
    â€œIt’s okay. My mom says the same thing, often in the same tone of voice.” She immediately regretted the words. There was no use in being angry at her mother,

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