Would we Move to Our Little House Again?
A friend of mine recently sent me an email asking me about living in the country. She is tired of dealing with bad neighbors in her urban neighborhood.
“I was wondering if you might be able to tell me about the less than ideal side about living in the country, like just anything I might not be thinking of.”
And finally, she asked “Would you do it again?”
These are some of the things I told her she should think about:
Access: Access to food, entertainment, culture and just about anything else. Internet access is what drives me crazy the most. If you live out as far as we do, you have to have satellite or live with dial-up.
Costs: You have to consider that your vehicles will need more care/maintenance (tires thick enough to handle these country rocky roads costs us about $800 every 2-3 years), oil changes and gasoline costs are more. Insurance usually costs more simply because more people have collisions with deer in the country.
Wildlife: In the city, you worry about home invasions and break-ins. In the country, there are other types of dangers that shouldn’t be discounted. If you have a problem with guns, you need to get over that in the country. We’ve had to shoot rattlers, copperheads and water moccasins that have come to the house and our guns could well save us or the dogs from a bear, mountain lion or coyote attack.
Isolation: Although I worked from home before, I was just 10 minutes away from a sushi bar if I needed human interaction, or 5 minutes from a grocery store. Now, every trip out needs to be planned and we combine most of our errands in one outing, which could last 4-7 hours. I miss being involved with professional writing groups and being able to meet a friend for lunch and be back at my desk within an hour or two. Also, in this area, as in most rural Bible Belt areas, most social functions revolve around church involvement, so if you aren’t involved in a church, it could be even more difficult to get to know people.
The people who aren’t our neighbors: While we don’t have anyone living against our property lines that annoy us on a daily basis, this area, like any other, is not untouched by bad people. We deal with bad hunters every year that litter the woods with trash and their dead kills, and boaters who think they can camp on the lake shore yards from our backdoor because it is Corps of Engineers property. We have people who dump unwanted pets, leaving them for rural landowners to make horrible decisions on their fates. And we have greedy developers ready to snatch up hundreds of acres just beyond our property lines, clear cutting and platting dense subdivisions.
This list wasn’t meant to discourage my friend, or anyone reading today, from moving to the country, but instead, should just give some things to think over.
This also wasn’t the end of my list of things to think about. Tune in Tuesday for the rest of my email to her and the answer to that burning question:
“Would you do it again?”
For those of you who are thinking of a move to the country, did I list some things you hadn’t thought of, or if you have already moved to the country, anything I left out?