We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
...we're country hobbyists. Gentry. or would-be gentry. We own lots of boots and wellies and have no fear of outdoor labor, but our lives do not depend on it. Lotta' truth there. OTOH, being a hobby farmer gives one a new respect for our ancestors. How did they clear land without chainsaws and a trackhoe to pull the stumps? Also, it makes (or should make) one extremely thankful for supermarkets. I know I am.
Grew up on a farm, spent the next 55 years on that farm, will leave it in one week. Hard work but satisfying work. I'm grateful for the opportunity to prove myself and succeed without anyone helping or telling me what to do. There aren't too many jobs around that can say that.
Actually, I’ve changed my life back to being a (real) country boy. After thirty years of sitting in a desk chair editing textbooks, living in a suburb, riding the subway, and so on, i got a house in the country and run a handyman service. I lost five or ten pounds and three notches off my belt, and I feel as strong as I did at twenty-five years. I go out every morning before dawn to feed the hens, then work at physical labor all day, often outdoors. BTW, I have just one pair of wellies, one pair of steel-toe boots, and one pair of hiking boots. The hiking boots don’t get as much use as they used to—Saturday afternoon and Sundays I now generally feel the need for rest, rather than enforced exertion.
I think the whole epidemic of being "country" is pathetic. It seems to me to be a manifestation of peoples need to be, in their own minds, authentic, in some way. I see on YT the "back to the land" videos getting millions of views when the people making the videos don't have a clue what it's really all about and none of the people watching will ever be raising cows. Living in the country is hardly the same as being "country" any more than moving to Sweden makes you Swedish.
I grew up in a suburb and will never be either urban or country. Now we're sort of exurban, but within a 20-minute drive of most needs. We buy nearly all our food. We are on a well, cistern, and septic system, though, with a propane-powered backup generator, as anyone should be who lives in hurricane country, urban or not.
As I've said before, we have been trying to get to the country for years and due to things out of our control haven't been able to pull it off yet. When I go out into the country my whole body changes and I just relax and breathe. People that have known me over the years tell me I am a different person in the country. Hope we can get away from the suburbs soon before we get too old and die. I am not disillusioned about life in the country as my parents retired to the country to live in retirement until my father died and my mother sold the family farm with the push from my sister. Wish we would hae had the money to buy the farm years ago.