Wednesday, 9 May 2007

Everybody's doing it - please don't

No, no, no, no, no! If everybody does it there'll be none left for me! Selfishness rules. I don't want every urbanite to turn with relief to the countryside, or the rural world will become full of people like me (or like me but much richer and with different politics and intolerances). Once it was Paul Heiney, although he didn't last long, then it was Vic Reeves and Jonathan Ross (pig lovers both), and now it is Rosie Boycott and there are celebs and unknowns of every shape all at it. Please stop it, and in particular please stop writing books about it and stop making TV programmes about it or you'll just inspire more people to up sticks and move. Tell folks that if they want the rural life they should get an allotment (or a window box), keep a couple of ducks or hens in the garden, have a riding lesson on Saturdays and still be able to spend time at the theatre/gallery/footie stadium/nightclub by staying metropolitan. Tell them how your nails break in the countryside, how you have to be able to reverse your car for miles to the last passing place, how there are no parties, that the clothes shopping is crap and that vegetarians are strange loons limited to Totnes. Tell them that it ain't all roses and honeysuckle and that pigs escape, sheep die, tuberculosis is rife and that privacy is lost forever in a truly rural backwater. Show them the calluses on your hands, the dirt under your fingernails, the fallen arches that non-stop welly wearing develops (no more Jimmy Choos for you - arrgh he even has a Devon shoe!). Make up tales of lawlessness and rustling, of wild boars, panthers and wolves on the prowl and that the 999 services can spend two hours hunting down an address with no street name. Some naughty fun could be had with imaginative statistics too - 85% of rural schoolchildren fail to find a job perhaps, or 7 out of 10 city bonus purchasers find themselves being made redundant within twelve months of buying a hobby farm. You know the kind of thing. Spread the word. The countryside is a strange place - enter at your peril!


mutterings and meanderings said...

The thing is, most of 'em don't actually like it when they get here!

Eurodog said...

One of my children was asked in a remote corner of Cornwall if French was a written language.