When I left university, many of my friends headed for the bright lights of London for jobs or to enjoy city life.  I was never interested in doing this probably because I am not a huge fan of the tube-who is? Although I have travelled a bit, I have actually always lived in Wiltshire.

So why do I love country living so much?

  • Surroundings and being outdoors

If I ask you to think of your earliest memory, I expect it involved water, slight peril (or the perception of it) and you were alone or with friends. In other words, there were no adults in sight and you were probably outside. This is definitely true for me and I think we like to recreate these early positive memories. I enjoy being in a woodland or striding across a field. I love being outdoors with my family and dog going for a walk. This often involves local pubs of course but the fact is a pub garden is outside and the “peril” is getting home again! Anyone with teenagers will know that nowadays, it’s often just me, dog and hubbie which suits us. We enjoy local walks, being outside and enjoying the beautiful views and surroundings that Wiltshire has to offer. It really is a stunning county. Just be aware that you may not get a great phone signal or if you meet a herd of cows you are best not to run away but to run at them. Yes, really.

  • Quiet, private and clean spaces

I like time for quiet and peaceful reflection. Mindfulness is a term used to describe living in the moment; being aware of our thoughts, feelings and the sensations that our body feels in our environment. I think that living in the country enables me to do this. I enjoy seeing and hearing the birds in my garden and watching the plants grow and change. I will often sit at the top of a hill whilst on a walk with my dog just enjoying that moment of quietness and stillness. I just can’t imagine having this opportunity if I lived in a large city. After a stressful and “too busy” day knowing that a walk in the nearby woods is possible, really helps to clear stressful heads.

  • Knowing my neighbours

I like my neighbours. They actually dropped around a Christmas card and choccies last night and I will reciprocate tonight. That makes me feel nice and that’s what life is about isn’t it? Liking and looking after each other? Living in the countryside means you may not have very close neighbours but everyone does tend to know each other. This can be a pain when someone asks you how your mum is and you haven’t the foggiest idea who they are but, in general it’s a better way to live in my opinion. I read about how old people are the loneliest they have ever been and that makes me feel sad. Everyone should know their neighbours. Just be prepared for lots of local gossip in the country….

Now I’m not naive. There are negatives about living in rural areas such as the lack of jobs, the changes in farming (a conversation for another day), the less money for services and the closing of local amenities but I wouldn’t change where I live. In fact I love it more now that I am lucky enough to live in the old house in the shires!

So if you are thinking of making the move to a more rural area and you value the things I do, then you will love it. Just remember that it may take you a while to get to know the other “carrot crunchers” but once you’re part of the local ramblers, bridge players or cider drinkers it’s “gurt lush”.