Visiting Fallingwater

A house so beautiful that you almost burst into tears the first time you see it up close. I spent half a day yesterday at Falllingwater and it is everything they say it is, and more. The pity is that one cannot linger. We were on tour number 29 of the day and when we left, tour number 60 of the day was setting out. The walks and hikes in the woods are not hurried, however, so one can linger and enjoy the land, verdant with white rhododendron groves. I found a few native sassafras trees asserting themselves amid the pines and other tall trees. Photos inside the house were prohibited, so I cannot share the details of the house and its construction. You just have to go there. The best life of all is in a great city, with access to art and music and culture, but if one is to have second place amid the mountains, nothing on earth could be more joyous than this place. To awaken in a house like this is to arrive in a day in which great things are expected of you. Maybe some people could not deal with that, and for them, the trailer park, the cookie-cutter suburban ranch, the termite-nest apartment building.

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  1. Originally, from Israel, I arrived in Pittsburgh in 1977. The first trip out of the city was visiting Fallingwater. At that time it was not, yet, the pilgrimage we see these days. Even at winter (although not entering the house) one could walk along the waterfall and down, along the creek. Seeing this "house of genius" as I named it, snow delineating its sweeping terraces above the gushing waters: the only sound you could hear, was as though you entered a sacred space. Nature's colors and sounds and the views to and from the house changed as winter turned into spring, summer and fall. The magic created by having a house hovering over a fall, not facing it was Frank Lloyd Write's genius.

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