By Ron Baker
Why do we stay in a rural setting?
For some the answer revolves around what we call fate. “This is where the job is.” “This is where my partner lives.” “This is only the first step.”
In which case the lovers of the rural setting are given ample opportunity to exhibit the benefits of rural living.
I am not against urban living. I enjoy the conveniences, the sense of progress, and even the frustrations of people everywhere. I have lived in Toronto, Edmonton, Saskatoon and Regina.
You can love a city.
You can also love a town. Even one that desires to be a city.
What are some things about rural living which I enjoy? Here are three!
“I am a rock, I am an island” – that was a theme of a previous generation. Didn’t work too well – other than to create a medicated society looking for hope from despair and loneliness You can’t live without others. In a smaller setting, we accept that who you know affects what your life will be like. That doesn’t mean that we forego justice, or forget expertise. It does mean that post office and coffee row and church potlucks and bar stool conversations are about living life.
Settling in means that you recognize the limitations. Additional health care or warehousing or entertainment will be supplied by other centres. Rural living means planning. Rural living also means being creative. When seeding and harvest happen, we accept shutdown. When the rest of the year happens, we enjoy fowl suppers, outdoor movies, parades, festivals, . . . Your calendar can be as full as you want.
You cannot escape irritating people or boring planning, but you can decide to make the best of the situation. There is a difference between feeling like a victim of rural life and being a receiver of the life a rural setting gives..Turning from the fast lane of life to a relaxed lane will benefit your health, make you a better person and even help you keep your friends.
A professor of mine once said – “Wherever you are, be all there.”
A wise instructor!