If you ever want a true juxtaposition that starkly shows the difference between city and rural life rent "Michael Clayton". At one point they show Tom Wilkinson as Arthur Edens in the middle of Times Square, they have a 360 degree pan of him just standing there among the cacophony of noise and neon flashing lights, large screen TV's and it is just sensory overload.
In a split second the shot is of a white house with black trim and the sounds of wind blowing gusts of heavy snow. You can hear the snow hitting surfaces. The camera slowly pans towards a red barn, the snow coming in blankets. The two scenes couldn't be starker, yet it’s not the scenes as much as it is the feeling I get that is generated from that contrast. One second and its Times Square in New York City, half a second later it’s a rural setting in the mid-west. I know it’s me but I get a visceral reaction to the two screen shots and my bet is I'm not the only one. Allot of people have moved to rural areas for the serenity that was depicted in that second scene. Not all have taken up the mantle of growing local and/or organic but enough are to make it a full fledge movement.
As I said, I grew up in the city and my dream was to own land in the country. It’s a feeling allot of us have to move to a house where we can grow and life is some what simpler. Its not really, it is constant work and infinitely complex and there are no vacations. You see and learn things everyday, because where you live is governed by nature, not by man as in a city. Sometimes you can actually hear no man made sounds sort of a silence, the birds might be chirping and flying around but that’s it. It doesn't happen often but it gives you an idea of what generations before us heard. On Sundays we get to hear the local church bell ring calling people to service.
Its a life style choice, which is why we live with chickens, skunks, groundhogs, raccoons, deer, possums, snakes, more bugs than I'm able to identify, hundreds of bird species from cardinals to blue jays, a little yellow breasted bird that looks like a canary and of course their offspring. We had a turkey family a couple of years ago; they hung around the front of the house and lived in the trees on the top lot. There was a mother, father and four little ones. We haven't seen them since 2004 because they do migrate a little. But it is this kind of happening that reminds you that the city is pretty far away and you’re in close to a natural habitat.
Last Sunday we were getting ready to start the day and my wife heard what she thought was slight tapping at the sliding glass door. She went to investigate and found that we had a wild turkey pecking at the door. She called me and said a turkey is knocking at our door. So I asked the only question I knew; is it dressed? If you don't understand please read "Look Honey they have dressed rabbits" from a previous blog.