Life in the Countryside

Living in the countryside is not all romance and tranquillity despite the wonderful landscapes and incredible views, the fresh air and lack of pollution, the feeling of escaping the rat race. Here in the UK a rural location so often means a lack of amenities as village shops close down and local schools don’t have sufficient pupils to remain open, so they have to be bussed to a nearby town, public transport is non-existent or infrequent and in many picturesque areas local housing can be extremely expensive with many being second homes where city people visit, but don’t live.

West Gate on Trencrom Hill. August 2019. Click to enlarge image.

We are so often seduced by films and TV programmes into thinking a rural life is a better life, where you can grow your own food, enjoy lots of hobbies and get fit through country hikes and bike rides and it can be, but it can also be a hard life if you run a business and sometimes a lonely life. Broadband connections can be slow, mobile phone reception erratic and without a car you can become quite isolated.

Heather at dusk. Little Trevalgan nr St Ives. August 2019. Click to enlarge image.

I didn’t set out to live in quite as remote a location as I do, a tiny hamlet built up around a farm, but finding a house both the OH and I liked was difficult on our budget. We intended to be in or at least close to a town which is what we were both used to, but we fell in love with the views from this house and persuaded ourselves that it’s not really that far from a town or the beaches. And it isn’t, but to reach either requires having to drive.

Trevalgan Hill. August 2019. Click to enlarge image.

I’m enjoying living in the countryside for now as it is a complete change from suburban places I have previously lived in, and I love the views from my window of the local dairy herd grazing in the fields, new born calves and lambs; Alice, the engine house, a focal point in the lane that provides a sense of the history of the county; the sound of horses slowly trotting along the lane, seagulls, crows and mewing buzzards; the smell of fresh air (though not the permeating smell of cattle manure); watching the sea fret slowly creep in filling the hollows between the hills and the ever-changing colours of the windswept downs, but I realise that one day I shall probably have to move back to a town environment for the facilities it offers as we grow older.

Ruins of Wheal Alice engine house. August 2019. Click to enlarge image.

For now though I am more than content with my life in the country.

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #64 | Countryside



  1. Sandra says:

    Those colours! And yes, I hear what you’re saying and there are regular moments when I’m aware of what I lack by living here. We too, can’t stay here for ever. All the more reason to appreciate it!

  2. Colline says:

    It is a wonderful life to live if only for a while.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Nice to have the opportunity to try out something different.

  3. Tina Schell says:

    Know exactly what you mean Jude. Our home on the beach is so precious to me. Views are wonderful, nature surrounds us and we bike or walk all over. On the other hand we are 45 minutes from the closest hospital and beginning to think about what happens when in the not distant future. I worry more than I should about it as I don’t want to leave but some day does eventually come doesn’t it? Your images tell us how hard it would be to move so enjoy it as long as you can!

    1. Heyjude says:

      I tend not to worry about these things, I am someone who generally copes with whatever life throws at me, but recently having to drive to and from hospital to visit my son or take him in for check-ups I have realised how tiring those journeys can be and that is only 30 mins each way. Also the OH doesn’t drive so he is fairly dependent on my giving him lifts if he wants to go out, even if just to the bus stop or railway station. If I am sick then we have to rely on taxis or grocery deliveries. Being closer to a town would be a sensible option, but I do love my countryside views!

      1. Tina Schell says:

        Oh I definitely hear you on that Jude. My husband was in the hospital Christmas week 2016. I cannot imagine what it would be like if it had been longer. Just trying to take my own advice and enjoy where we are as long as we can.

  4. I’ve always lived in a village and love the countryside, but with the nearest proper hospital over the border in Shrewsbury (and a 45 minute drive away… assuming no tractors are on the way), it does get worrying in an emergency. Oh, and going to any kind of event often involves either a long car journey or (preferably) a train journey and hotel. Still, I wouldn’t have it any other way 🙂

    1. janesmudgeegarden says:

      The colours in your first photo are nothing less than glorious.
      I very much understand how you feel about living in the country. Previously we lived out of town on 30 acres with a huge garden and 400 olives trees. We built up everything from a rather bare sheep paddock. It was such an exciting time for us but eventually we realised it was getting to be a lot of work (though we’re not quite decrepit yet) and we sold up and moved into town. After five years we still miss our beautiful place by the river and are still trying to get used to being in suburbia.

    2. Heyjude says:

      Having previously lived in Ludlow (with all its conveniences AND closeness to the countryside) I know all about the tractors! Or what I renamed Tructors! (Always a tractor or a slow moving truck in front of you on those narrow winding roads). Plus the long drive to even reach a motorway and don’t mention airports! At least there was a train station that we could walk to, unlike here which necessitates a car or a taxi. But the countryside is so lovely in many ways. I guess we can’t have it all and certain things take priority at different stages of our lives.

  5. Elizabeth says:

    You are right about romanticizing the country life. When a partner dies one can become very isolated. We chose to live nearer to amenities at this point in our life.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Yes, that would certainly change things, especially if I went first as the OH doesn’t drive and would be very isolated.

      1. Elizabeth says:

        A friend’s sister actually slipped into a pretty severe depression after her husband died. She was very isolated in the country and my friend didn’t realize what was happening.

        1. Heyjude says:

          That’s sad, but understandable. If the OH is away I can spend days not talking to anyone. I hope she was okay in the end.

        2. Elizabeth says:

          Her sister is taking her for treatment and urging her to move into tow.

        3. Heyjude says:

          Sounds like a good idea, I wish them both well.

  6. You make a very strong case, you might almost convince me to live in the country. Almost! I’ll always be a city girl, but I love to get out in the countryside temporarily. I think having to drive everywhere would also prevent me being entitle happy. I hate driving!

    1. Heyjude says:

      I actually love driving, but not so much reversing on these winding lanes with the unforgiving granite walls lurking beneath the greenery! And I do not enjoy night driving so once winter sets in I am mostly at home. It would be nice at that time of year to be able to walk to a cinema or an art gallery or even a restaurant.

  7. Joanne Sisco says:

    Thanks for the peak into your world. From the perspective of someone who lives in a large city and sometimes feels overwhelmed by its busy-ness, you’re right, there is an allure to country living … simple, peaceful, laidback. Thanks for pointing out the realities.

  8. Lignum Draco says:

    An interesting and relevant presentation of the other side of the story. Here, many country towns are dying and running out of water. However, I do envy the natural beauty of your current home.

  9. Suzanne says:

    It used to make us laugh when we lived on our orchard and people would remark about the quiet countryside. They indeed had not visited during harvest times. I do enjoy your Cornwall shots Jude and thanks for another slice of your paradise.

  10. Oh good for you, enjoy it while you can. And that heather is so colourful! Like a patchwork quilt thrown on the ground.

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