Vermont Scenes 2022

A view from the Island Line Trail, walking north to South Hero Island.  Fall in Vermont is rife with colors and hikers are rewarded with some spectacular sights.  The Adirondack mountains are in the distance.  Causeway Park, Colchester, VT.

Click below for enlarged photos.  More photos?  Look for the 2020-21 pages.  

Photos are licensed: CC-SA   Attrib: Brian Chapaitis

Local Scenes

Old Style Commerce -
Jericho Market

A rite of Jericho VT. in June is an outdoor market on Thursdays, where local artisans and fresh produce can be purchased. This stimulates the local economy and provides an outlet for those with fertile and prolific gardens, to increase their income.  Our favorite vendor is "Delicious Dirt" and their fresh lettuce and vegetables. Some entrepreneurs serve up ethnic takeaway foods, like "Mediterranean" for an easy carry-out meal.  Near Mills River Park and the Browns River, Jericho VT.  June 2021

Outdoor Services -
Jericho Congregational Church

The Pandemic wasn't easing off, and so the church moved to outdoor services during the pleasant summer months. This farm setting afforded a nice view of Mount Mansfield and some members, possibly the Davis family, provided the tent pavilion for us to use. The Browns River meanders nearby.  On the Davis' dairy pasture land, Davis Farm, Jericho VT.  June 2021

Birthdays -
Neighborhood Parties

The neighbors have kids over for a birthday party. I was fascinated by this inflatable "Bounce House" castle for the children to play in, and I just sort of want to crawl in there myself, to see what it's like. No fairy queens in sight, except maybe "The Princess" herself, next door <grin>. It's so nice to have young ones running around the place, and getting together on a hot summer day. Super-soaker battles anyone?  The neighbor's backyard adjacent to ours, Black Walnut Lane, Jericho VT. June 2021

Garden Windmills -
The Rites of Spring

In Vermont Spring only barely begins in May. The trees are just starting to bud at this point, and therefore, off we go to the local florist to purchase flowers for the house garden. Besides all the colorful flowers, store visitors are greeted with a range of colorful mobiles to purchase, and one sees these from time to time in people's yards, catching the wind.  Claussen's Florist, Colchester, VT.  May 2021

A COVID Portrait -
Mirror Masking

During a cold spell, while helping a friend up north, I (Brian) took a moment to catch myself in the car's rear-view mirror. I never get too many pictures of me, because I'm always the photographer behind the lens. Expressive COVID masking was the rage, and I'm into learning lots of useful rope knots. Bowline anyone?  Near Lake Carmi, East Frankin, VT. April 2021

My Hobby -
Sailboat Design

This is what an almost bored, engineer does, to unwind in the midst of high-powered technical ministry (building tech tools for the advancement of the Kingdom of God). I design and build sailboats! Many a creative hour is spent designing and re-designing a portable sailboat. Alas, the CE on the sail is not right here, and Kaya-2 never quite sailed true. In my next design, I re-built the mast step about 7 inches forward on the extruded-aluminum frame. Can you recognize what the inexpensive aluminum boom is really?  Malletts Bay, Colchester VT. May 2021

Church Meetings Return -
Mask Up Everyone!

One of our favorite families at church, the Henaults, were captured here just as physical church gatherings were returning, but with masks. Everyone was tired of endless self-isolation at homes and virtual meetings exclusively on-line. It was so nice to get together almost "face-to-face", except you only saw smiles through everyone's eyes.  Jericho Congregational Church, Jericho Center, VT.  April 2021

Outdoor Meetings -
Church Planning

Since inside meetings were becoming risky, our church went virtual more often, and sometimes sub-committees of the church would meet outdoors. Here, Rev. Dave Coons, (center) armed with a white-board and warmer weather, tries to determine Jericho Congregational Church's core values, with hand-picked members of our congregation. It took many such meetings to synthesize ideas into a short statement articulating just who we are as a congregation.  JCC Church, Jericho Center, VT.  April 2021

Friendship -
Fixing Cars

It was time to sell our year 2000 Subaru Outback. No sooner had we made the decision, then a rather loud "squeak" developed while driving that could not be missed. Our long time friend, Jody van Horn, jacks up the car in one of his barns, and we crawl under to inves-tigate. Turned out to be a frozen joint in the anti-sway bar, but we never did actually fix it ourselves. A happy end-ing?  Yes. Jody liked this inspection of the under-carriage so much, that he purchased the car from us!  Van Horn's former dairy barn (I think).  Off Beartown Road, Underhill, VT.  April 2021

Local Hangouts -
Westford Country Store & Cafe

In the heart of town, right on the green, one finds this beautiful country store. They offer homemade baked goods, deli specials, and many local products, such a Vermont Maple syrup and farm-to-table fresh eggs. The cafe inside is the perfect place to gather with friends, and one church has a Friday morning men's Bible Study that meets there regularly. Like all country stores here, there is a rustic feel once inside- something not experienced, as for example, with a "McDonalds". Our EV LEAF parked here.  Westford Vermont, April 2021

A Blessed Easter -

On holiday, just before Easter this year, Helen and I ascended (by foot) to the ancient sanctuary of Athena, now in complete ruins.  We celebrate conquering this physical hill of around 500 ft..  Once there we were greeted with fantastic views of the Euboean Gulf, (not shown) and the Cross of Christ!  So fitting to find this here, where Christ's resurrection conquers everything, including death itself.  The acropolis (high city), overseeing the port town of Eretria, Greece.   April 2022

Porch Repairs -
Rev. Peter Anderson

I had the privilege of assisting Rev. Peter Anderson (wife Sharon) when severe ice weather damaged the porch supports for a summer camp on Lake Carmi. The upright support was completely gone, and needed to be replaced, as shown here. On a sabbatical leave years ago, Peter and Sharon visited us while in Papua New Guinea, and they are now retired. Today, it's amazing to realize that God organized events such that we would settle down in their neighborhood. We are blessed to have them as near friends. Carmi Lake water front (white out), near Franklin Vermont, April 2021

Skiing -
Trapp Family Lodge

Friend Ben Courtemanche and I go cross-country skiing at the famous Von Trapp Family Lodge. Remember "Sound of Music"?  Yes, the same Von Trapp family, and this is the backyard forest of where they settled. Ben leads the way on an extensive trail system with nicely maintained trails. There's a chapel and a "tea room" lodge deep in the forest with a hand-pump well for water. Ben helps me unpack disciple-making issues, particularly with younger Christians, since he is on staff with the Navigators in my region. Trapp Family Lodge, Stowe Vermont, March 2021

Outdoor Fireplaces -
Trapp Family Lodge

Deep in the woods, is a cabin with an indoor fireplace for skiers to come rest and warm up, but this is Covid season! Yikes! Socializing just got a whole lot trickier. So enterprising people set up an outdoor fireplace where one can feel a bit safer meeting up with fellow outdoor enthusiasts. A great oppor-tunity to sit around and reminisce about "the good ol' days" of carefree skiing (and also what God might be doing). Classic S'mores anyone?  Trapp Family Lodge, Stowe Vermont, March 2021

Plant Friends -
Our Christmas Cactus

Despite the name, this plant actually originates from the tropical rain forests of South America. Ours seems happy, content, and blossoms right on cue around Christmas time and then drops all flowers. But this one goes on to show its revitalizing powers, by celebrating up to two more blossom cycles well into March. I know a few Christians like this too, having ups and downs, but in the end flourishing.  Our living room, Jericho Vermont, March 2021

My Favorites -
Two Women Chatting

The two most important women in my life, Helen and my sister Lisa, enjoy a moment together via the wonders of Zoom. A very common sight in the winter months where people are cooped up in their houses, and trying to stay more isolated. Although we all grew tired of virtual meetings, I wonder what the 1918-21 pandemic was like, in an age where there was no Internet. In 1914, at the start of World War I, there were 10 people for every working telephone in the U.S.  Our house, Jericho Vermont.  January 2021

Snowman Burials -
Saying Goodbye

A large snowstorm descends upon Vermont and our friend, the snowman, (see a few weeks back) says good-bye. A "bump" is the only reminder that he is "sort-of" with us still. Our regional weather systems come from Canada mostly, and often our weather patterns are different than the southern New England states. So for example, New York City gets buried, and we hardly have any snowfall. In this case, after digging out their driveways, the skiers rejoice and soon hit the slopes in droves.  Our house, Jericho Vermont.  January 2021

The Workshop -
Kayak Custom Covers

Kaya-2 the kayak catamaran, needed custom splash guards that had to be hand-made. After finding a suitable water-resistant material, stainless steel grommets were mounted and elastic pull down straps attached to anchors that were added to the hull. I found out that stainless steel rivets are a lot harder to work with, than standard aluminum. I've never done anything like this before, but I thought it came out quite nice, in the end. Another wintertime project while staying indoors away from the the Pandemic.  The downstairs shop at our house, Jericho Vermont.  January 2021

River Cascades -
Winter Tranquility

The Browns river, like any river, awaits the fresh snow melt of spring, where new meanders create sand bars in new places from the year before. The abandoned threads of years past are where the very first grasses grow, and wild-life make new homes. There's something special about cascades with ice in the "frigid" weather. And of course, a special quiet tranquility, because there are no birds and insects to be heard and the snow dampens sounds while walking about. Our visible breath is a constant companion.  Off Old Pump Road, Jericho VT.  January 2021

Backyard Skiing -
Winter Sports

Vermonters generally speaking, know how to play with snow. Neighbor Peter Anderson, shows off his cross-country skills on a track running through our backyard. It's normal for skiers and snow-shoers to pass through your property, and for the most part, no one minds. For my part, I had culture shock figuring out all the different cross-country ski types and incompatible shoe/binding systems that had changed while I was away for 30 plus years. Gone are the days of simplicity, even for Nordic skiing.  Our house, Black Walnut Lane, Jericho VT.  January 2021

Store Shields -
Coping with Covid-19

As the retail industry in Vermont copes with the Pandemic, they started placing clear poly-carbonate shields everywhere, protecting both the customer and the worker (shown here). Helen (the walking miracle) wanted to get back into cross-country skiing, so we made the trip to the "big city" to try to find affordable ski boots for her.  Alas, the ones found were way, way too expensive. It seemed that everyone and his aunt, had turned to out-door sports, and there was a purchase run on this type of equipment. Church Street, in the "big" city of Burlington, Vermont  January 2021

Bicycle Restoration -
Indoor Activities

As the Pandemic forced everyone to isolate more, what better time than to get those "back-burner" projects done?  This classic 1985 vintage Univega bicycle was waiting in our storage over 35 years for someone to apply some tender-loving care and restore it to new life. (Kinda like Christ with us, correct?) My efforts paid off handsomely after re-taping the handlebars and stringing at least one new cable. Note the simplicity of the design back then. The continuous movement shift-levers are mounted on the front down tube. What could be simpler to repair?  Note the very exotic bicycle stand built into the workbench <grin>.  Our house, downstairs workshop, Jericho VT.  December 2020

A Visitor -
The House Snowman

Helen made a tiny snowman out on the back porch. This little buddy brought joy and cheer to us, as he grew in stature with each fresh snowfall, but alas, like all snow-persons, this one had to say good-bye in the end. If you can't think of fun things to do with snow in Vermont, you will go stir crazy in the wintertime. Some call it "cabin fever".  Our house, back porch area, Jericho VT.  January 2021

Browns River -
Winter Sunshine

Out on an errand, in cold but gorgeous sunny weather, I stopped to take in the Browns River which meanders all through the Jericho community. In the distance is Mount Mansfield and the Green Mountains covered in clouds. I never tire of the beauty of the State in all seasons. Such a contrast from the tropics where we spent most of lives. Here the climate and views change all the time, leading to refreshing respites.  Off Cilly Hill road, Jericho VT.  January 2021