Monday, March 2, 2009

Simpler Times

The previous post of the Lavoirs made Bindu sigh. She wrote of a life when we were not isolated and busy.
I look at the Lavoirs and see hard times, cold water and sore hands. Many of us don't live in our home towns and many now live in different countries. Now I wouldn't change that, I am glad that I have lived in a few different places. In days gone by and especially before we all had cars life would have been totally different, maybe never leave your village and see the sea!

Compared to many I haven't travelled extensively, but I have eaten Spaghetti in Venice, drank Guinness in Ireland, eaten burgers in America, drank Ouzo in the Greek Islands, skied in Switzerland etc. and I am glad to have done that.
Bindu recently showed us on her blog some amazing unspoilt scenery in Patagonia, huge glaciers and breathtaking views of mountains, so maybe all the work is worth it if you get to balance things out with an amazing travel experience.

However I also understand how hard it is living in the rat race, not knowing or seeing your neighbours, and feeling isolated. I think it is all about getting the balance right, or doing things for a few years and then making a change. I know that it is not always easy to get the right mix of work and quality of life. Been there got the t shirt and made all the mistakes.

The photograph shows some Breton horses doing some demonstration ploughing at the Comice Agricole, farming today in many Western countries is a very lonely occupation, no team work.
Sociable or Harder Times

Beautiful Lead horse takes a rest

It is an interesting topic to muse over! Take a trip over to Transient Lives, Bindu's blog she takes fantastic photographs, and writes so beautifully too!

The French word for balance is équilibre.

The French word for mix is mélange.


bindu said...

Interesting, Blu! This is a topic that I think about very often ... is the emotional isolation worth the material comforts? I guess in colder regions life was much harsher. But back home in India, I almost think my grandparents lived a more fulfilling life. They didn't have much wealth, but didn't need it either - they needed less, and lived lightly on the planet. But they lived close to the people who mattered to them ... they didn't travel, but they didn't know those places existed, so did it matter?? I can't decide ... :)

LadyFi said...

Interesting! Oh- and great shots of the horses!

One thing that has struck me in my travels is that there is more a sense of community in the poorer parts of the world. It seems as if materialism and too much comfort make us forget our humanity and compassion for others.

Henry the Dog said...

Very thoughtful post. My mum has never lived sparsely and wouldn't know where to start without her dishwasher, but she's done the city life and the country life and in her view there is no competition. It's country all the way. That's the main thing she's dreading about going back to the UK, the hustle and bustle. If she had the choice at this moment in time she'd stay here forever and never travel again.

Carol and Chris said...

I think a great way of re-connecing with your community (where ever you are) is to volunteer. Give a couple of hours a week....not only will you help someone but you will make new friends in the process!! I've moved within the UK loads of times and across the world and have to say that volunteering was my way in every time!!

C x

Un Peu Loufoque said...

You've probably read it but if not get hold of a copy of Pierre-Jakez Helias' "The Horse of Pride". I think you would enjoy it. I'm not sure that farmers here are as isoalted as perhaps in the UK or USA as a lot of the tasks are still down en masse, harvesting shared etc and in the communes everyone knows everyone more or less in the same way as thier great grandparents did , except of course etrangers comme nous!

Blu said...

Bindu you got my brain working eh!

Agree with LadyFi about materialism.

Henry understand about the washing up!

Chris & Carol, sounds like good advice although would be almost impossible in France with the interesting restrictions.
Un Peu Loufoque..thanks for commenting will see if I can get that book.

claire p said...

We have two brothers in the village, both in their 80's who live together. They were born here and, until a few years ago never went out of the parish. Then they suddenly got the travel bug and started going on cruises. Until their health stopped them. Now they hardly leave the village. And yet if you want to know anything that is going on in a thirty mile radius you ask them and they will know!

~vagabond~ said...

I just got done reading Bindu's post and then read yours and now I'm all nostalgic for home and the simple days of my childhood when life was so much simpler, when time moved along slower and I could simply follow my heart without having to be practical.
Both your posts suddenly make me homesick.