Fallingwater, Fallingleaves

Though Jordan and I have both been Frank Lloyd Wright fans for a (sort of long, sort of short) while, neither of us had actually visited any of his creations.  There are not nearly as many Wright houses in this neck of the woods as say Illinois, Fallingwater, or the Kaufmann house, one of his most famous homes, is located in Pennsylvania.  A Pittsburgh family, the Kaufmanns, had the house built in the late 30s.  A visit generally requires a reservation, especially during the fall, so we booked early.  Last night, we were hesitant to make the trip because the weather was looking iffy, but the weathermen changed their mind by this morning, so we headed north yet again.

The drive, which is supposed to take around three and a half hours, ended up being more like four and a quarter, thanks to accidents on the Beltway and and entrance ramp onto I-70.  I called ahead to say we’d be late, and the woman on the phone acted like they would do their best, but couldn’t make any promises.  Fortunately, we discovered that being a little later really doesn’t matter at all…wish the woman on the phone would have just told us that.

Though the driver might not have liked it as much since he didn’t get to look around the whole time, the drive to Fallingwater was beautiful.  The foliage is really beginning to peak further north.  Last night, they received a dusting of snow in the higher elevations, so the pines seemed quite picturesque as well.  Even what was kind of an annoying detour, thanks to the accident, led us by some beautiful homes surrounded by fall trees.

About Fallingwater, you ask?  The grounds were nice, well kept, and have a few short hiking trails that we might have tried out if it had been a little warmer.  The wind shook the leaves from the trees at the perfect rate.  From the visitor center, you have to walk about a quarter of a mile to the house where you meet up with your tour guide.  Our tour guide seemed relaxed and was informative, but she seemed a bit jaded by having to give tour after tour.  I think tour guides often forget that the people on their tours are usually seeing something for the first time.  Maybe she was mad that she was missing the Steelers’ game or something.

We were able to walk inside the main house and the guest house.  After being there, I have decided that I greatly desire built-in bookshelves and a fireplace in my dream home.  The eclectic art collection of the Kaufmanns was quite to my taste.  They had many sculptures, woven baskets, etc.  There were two original Diego Rivera paintings (he was actually a guest at the house), prints of unique birds, and Japanese prints as well.  I would be fine with out their Tiffany lamps, though.  There were books and places for books everywhere.  Each bedroom had its own bathroom and terrace.

With every touristy thing, though, there are just too many people around to get the perfect shot.  We still tried.  I mentioned that this house would be perfect for Jordan, since he likes waterfalls and the house has its own.  He replied very seriously with “Yeah, I don’t know.  I think these crowds might bother me.”  Goober.

After leaving Fallingwater, we stopped to view the falls in nearby Ohiopyle State Park.

And then we couldn’t resist stopping in to split a pizza, before picking up a latte and fudge for the ride home.  Every good day should end with pizza and fudge.