The Romance of country

I got an email about a new book – The Romance of Farming – with little information except the title. Many think of the romance and forget the reality. This leads to disappointment when the two don’t meet. Being prepared for both is the marriage that makes a life. Not having both can make for a nasty ‘divorce.’

I think of the romance as the pleasant things. This is youngsters running on pasture, abundant harvests from the garden, sunsets over the back deck. These are the things that make living in the country worthwhile as well as BBQ dinners with friends, room for family to get together and less restriction with gatherings.

Then there’s the reality. There’s finding animals dead after a storm, or a birthing gone wrong, or beetles chewing on your plants. These things make it difficult to see the romance. Raising a lamb to be a productive and promising member of the flock then losing her isn’t fun. Sitting in a puddle by a fence trying to fish out a nose or feet isn’t glamorous.

Then there’s another good moment. The new pullets turned out or young rabbit doing well at a show or eating salsa produced in your garden and processed in your kitchen. It takes the sting from the down times. The balance is important.