We’re 3/4 of the way through lambing at the moment, and I’m actually writing this post amidst the orphan pen, so I can keep an eye on them and get some blogging done…rule no.1 in farming – multitasking you see.
Lambing is a whole other post so I’ll save the deets until then, but for now I just wanted to talk about some of the things I’m missing from life before farming.
I’ve found the last few weeks particularly challenging and have often found myself getting ‘citysick’…hmmm is that I thing…? What I mean; is sort of ‘homesick for the city’.
1. Seeing friends and family
Everyone always tells me how envious they are that I get to live in the countryside and be surrounded by nature, animals and spend my days feeding baby lambs. They’re right, although idyllic as it may be, I still have pangs of jealousy whenever I see my friends posting instagrams of them in nice new pop ups in London, knocking back cocktails, of those last minute drinks, dinner plans that you can have when you all work near/with each other. My friends and family are definitely what I miss most. Anyone who knows me or has worked with me knows that I LOVE to chat be around people, get me talking and it’s hard to shut me up. Farming can be really quite unsociable if you let it, we’re so busy all of the time at the moment that its hard to make plans and see friends and family, unless they come to visit and even then, catch ups aren’t quite the same whilst you’re trying to herd, feed, shear sheep at the same time. It can also be hard for friends and family that aren’t farmers to relate to your day-to-day existence – and why should they, its a completely alien world to them!
2. Connivence food
This is all going to make me sound really materialistic, but, I long for the days where I used to pick up an overpriced coffee on the way to work. It sounds stupid, but I loved my old pre work routine. It made me feel like a ‘grown up’…walking to work listening to Spotify, getting my coffee and croissant, setting it down on my desk and then having a catch up with people around the office each morning…’Did you see GOT last night…?’ ‘OMG – season finale of Broadchurch…didn’t see that coming’….you know the drill. Similarly – just nipping to Itsu or Pret for lunch…or just the mere multitude of options of eateries I used to be able to choose from. Now its a often a rushed sandwich scoffed in the Land Rover or if we’re lucky, in a nice picnic spot.
3. Clothes, beautiful clean fashionable clothes
I had a bit of an incident at around Christmas time. It happened when I was Christmas Shopping and I went into H&M to do a bit of self gifting…they had so many nice bits in and I ended up spending about an hour trying on different outfit combos. I got halfway to the till with arms laden and then had a huge realisation that I hadn’t actually worn any of my ‘before farming’ wardrobe for the last 3 months, and that buying all of these extra clothes wasn’t practical. Where was I going to wear the frilly white shirt that I had picked up, or the crisp blue chinos…the answer was, nowhere. I started to have an overwhelming urge to cry…thankfully I stopped myself…as crying at the till of H&M over a frilly white shirt would have been a new low. But it did make me sad. I put everything back…well nearly everything, I treated myself to a pale pink beanie as I reassured myself that I could getaway with wearing that on the farm. The fact is, clothes make me happy, I’m a self professed fashion fad follower and getting to wear ‘normal clothes’ and make up with my hair done nicely is something I REALLY miss.
4. Being in the know
I’ve gone from being in an industry that I know lots about, and a job that I felt confident in, and its been hard to adjust to being a bit clueless again. I hate not being useful and there is nothing worse than feeling in some situations, that you have nothing to add of value. It will all come with time, teaching and no doubt alot of googling, but for now I just have to try my best.
5. Going to the cinema (or insert other after work activities here)
I’m sure people with young children can relate, but I really miss just going to the cinema or just doing things after work. Going to the Cinema is one of my fave things to do, and we just haven’t had time to go. We’re lucky if we finish in time for an early bed, let alone going out past 7pm, and even if we did manage to get out I’m sure we’d both fall asleep!
I don’t want this post to sound really negative, as obviously there are lots of things I don’t miss. Delayed trains on my old commute being one of the big ones I can thing of off the top of my head! But I suppose the point is, the grass is always greener isn’t it.
I’m sure there are lots of my friends who, on the flip side, have an ambition to learn something completely new, who hate how much money they are wasting on their daily coffees on the way to work, who wish that their friends would stop pressuring them into boozey after work sessions that lead to MASSIVE hangovers, and who would love nothing more than to cruise around the countryside with no make up, hair slung up and not to care what they look like!
For now, I suppose I can always try rocking an ‘on trend’ look, hair preened, full make up on whilst riding the quad across the South Downs checking the sheep…although I may get some funny looks.