Tuesday, March 30, 2021

City Folk, Stay Where You Are

Dear City Folk,

Stay where you are.  Seriously.  There's nothing for you out here in rural America except strife and hardship.  

We have ticks and oak mites and chiggers.  We have five different kinds of venomous snakes.  We have black widows and brown recluse spiders.  We have European hornets and mahogany wasps and assassin bugs and assorted other bitey bugs.

We have roosters crowing at all hours during the day.  And coyotes howling at all hours during the night.  One neighbor has guinea hens and those things kick up one heck of a racket - day and sometimes night.  And when the animals aren't making noise, it's so quiet out here it'll drive a city person insane.

There is no Chinese take-out and no pizza delivery.  If you pick up hot food, it'll be cold by the time you get it home.  Hell, you're lucky if you can find a Burger King or a Wendy's within an hour's drive.  For grocery shopping, I have a choice between Walmart and the grocery store that gave me food poisoning.  And most of the restaurants around here are in the health department report with bad marks for cleanliness and food safety.  

Speaking of groceries, the fancy foods you can get in a city aren't for sale here.  Oh, sure, there's a guy with a truck who stops here and there selling seafood, but you have to get there early.  

Bookstores?  Not around here.  Drive an hour maybe.  Same with movie theaters.  And anything cultural.  Symphony?  Opera?  Live comedy?  Forget it.  There's a museum... I hear it has a really large collection of teacups.  

Our power goes out regularly.  I heard tell of a time a few years back where power was out for 10 days because a tree had fallen across the line that ran at the back of some dude's cow pasture and they couldn't find it.  Our phones are pretty good... if you use a landline.  Cell service out here blows.  We regularly get weekenders wandering around with their phones like their dousing for water.  If I have to use mine, I walk out and stand in the middle of the road.

Speaking of roads, ours have no sidewalks, bike paths, etc. and sure as hell no shoulders.  Seriously.  If you break down, get a flat, etc., you better hope no one's coming up behind you.  There's no place to pull over.  Call a tow truck?  Last person I knew who called a tow-truck had a two hour wait.  Triple A?  ROFL.

And there's no such thing as public transportation.  You want a bus?  You'd better enroll in public school because that's the only place you'll find one. Subway?  Only if you want a sandwich.  You thought you hated driving to the airport before?  Here, it's a 90 minute drive to an airport with 8 gates and one piddlin' restaurant.  And there aren't many direct flights anywhere.  Uber?  Umm, no.  Lyft?  Ut uh.  Taxi service?  ROFL.

Hell, we don't even have street names.  We have Farm Roads and Private Roads and Highways.  When I first moved here and had to give someone my address, they thought I lived on FARM ROAD.  No, no.  That's not the name of the road.  It's a Farm Road with either a number after it or a letter.  Farm Road 1122 or Farm Road YY, Private Road Q or Hwy 245.  That's the name.  

Face it, city folk, the learning curve for moving to the sticks is steep and twisted.  You're better off staying where you are.  Trust me on this.


Every Rural Citizen in America


  1. Ah...Spring is in the air and the lake people are starting to come out of hibernation. We could probably do a stand-up routine on them. And I'm not talking about the folks who live around a lake year-round. They're mostly retired and like the slow, unhassled life that comes from lifing in the boonies. Then there are those Lake People(tm) who own an expensive place and come for a long weekend. They migth try to recoup their "investment" by listing with a rental agency and letting strangers stay there when they are too busy living La Vida Loca in the city.

    True story. I'm part of an upcoming series where the group is HQ'd in Gatlinburg, TN. Because I'm weird, I went searching for property and buildings to put on the property for the HQ. I now get emails from RealtorDotCom with listings. I decided my HQ dude and hero of my first book in the series needed a place to live. I swear to all I hold holy that every listing has at least ONE heart-shaped jetted bathtub built for two. EVERY. SINGLE. LISTING! And the majority are red. I'm...I...[insert exploding head emoji -- 🤯 ]. What were those people thinking?!?! Oh, yeah. City folk. 'Nuff said.