I JUST READ Elizabeth Newberry's article ("Almost Heaven," November-December 2000). I am also from Bland, Virginia, and it was a very beautiful article. I call Bland "God's Country." Before the interstate was open, we were so isolated and so close—our history is like no other.
Growing up and going off to school, I was often made fun of because of my Bland County accent. Looking back, I now see that it was a special language of our own. Now when they make fun of the way I talk, I am able to laugh. The past is lost and I am sad to see how things have changed. I try to remember all the wonderful people I have known and try to remember Bland as it was long ago. I am so proud to be a part of it and feel lucky to live here.