Sunday, July 25, 2010

Considering life in a crowded, country church

Even people who live in the country like to get away to the country. On Saturday, The Builder and I skived off, leaving Gran and Pops to keep the home fires burning, and went to stay in a one-pub, one-café, three-horse (I saw them) town up the road a bit.

We ate, we wine-tasted, we talked about the important things in life (like where we’d go on our next holiday and whether we’d buy the riesling or the sauvignon blanc*). We sat out the back of the One Pub as the sun set and contemplated the vast ocean of peace that surrounded us. Dark, silent peace. If Fibrotown is quiet (and it is) compared to our former home in The Big Smoke, Three-Horse Town is a black hole where sound and matter simply don’t matter.

We sat there a while, breathing it all in (listening to the sound of our breathing and the clattering of a pin being dropped three houses down). Then retreated to the relative chaos of a log fire and a bar filled with six people.

Today, on our way home, we detoured past the world’s cutest church (that's it above). Stone. Picturesque. Picket fence. For Sale. It is simply the sweetest little property in the world. Surrounded by humongous houses on sweeping acres with interminable fences requiring maintenance, it’s a perfect 2000 square metres. It’s also one-bedroom, and that’s a loft, so not ideal for a family of four. We kept driving.

When I think of my ideal home in the country, I always picture somewhere like that little church. Surrounded by green, bathed in sunshine, bees abuzz in the swarm of flowers beside the drive. In reality, it’s a 15-minute drive even from Three-Horse Town. If I thought the back of the pub was dark and quiet, how would I go out there in the true blackness, listening to the field mice scuttle past the door?

Coming to terms with the sometimes deep gulf between what we think we want and what would be right for us is all part of growing up. Now that I’m on the slippery slopes of middle age, it appears I’m finally getting there.

Plus, it saves me having to rename this blog. Though Life in a Crowded Country Church has distinct possibilities…

{image: Frances Cashman}

*We went the only real option and bought both.


  1. Those little towns are just the best!
    Funny you should write about this today. I and my young son live in a mouldy old (grey) fibro shack.It's home for us and we have a lovely wild yard. A few times a year though I get all wistful and check out houses for sale in the area. I found one today, that I adore, except for it being on a horrible road. It's not your beautiful, lofty church, and definitely not in a quiet area; but I am still going to buy my $1.10 tatts ticket on Tuesday night, and cross my fingers.

  2. I was exactly the same when we went down to Tassie. Some of those tiny little towns with beautiful old, very old, buildings seemed appealing at the time, but when reality sets in, living an hour from the nearest 7/11 is not an option. Love that beautiful church tho. Easy to fall in love with those places.

  3. I'd vote for buying the church only if you could paint it pink ... Maybe day-glo pink so you could find your way back from the pub in the dark. =>

  4. What a perfect little getaway - No shops and tourist attractions to distract. Just wide open spaces, wine and eachothers company. Bliss.

    Love that little church although I think living in one would be a bit creepy for my liking!

  5. You are so right - the dream vs the reality. The comforts of the town / city still beckon, but I think I could definitely last a year or two in one of those quieter places. Would suit my anti-social tendencies down to the ground. No longer would I feel like I should be doing anything more than mowing the lawn and rebuilding the crumbling walls... Oh... Maybe not...

  6. Glad you both had a lovely weekend sans the boys. I'm with Jess though. I couldn't live in an old church - imagine the ghost activity!

  7. I don't know. I used to live on an island off the coast of Seattle, and a rural part of the island at that. It was a 15 min. drive just to get to the nearest grocery. A Target or something of that nature was a ferry ride to the mainland, which was a full day excursion. I loved it. You get used to it. Or at least, I got used to it and could again in a heartbeat! I miss it.

  8. "Coming to terms with the sometimes deep gulf between what we think we want and what would be right for us is all part of growing up. Now that I’m on the slippery slopes of middle age, it appears I’m finally getting there."

    That's it. That's it in a nutshell. Only I don't think I'm there yet. Still rolling.

    That church is the cutest. But the Fibro would never forgive you.

  9. Glad you enjoyed your little escape to the country. The church is so cute:) Personally I need to be handy to absolutely everything- so more of an inner city girl.

  10. So you just found my perfect house! A few small details to wrap up, like selling the one I just bought, packing up and moving to Australia...

    Hmmm. This may be more complicated than I thought. I'll put this in the 'Maybe' file :)

    And I agree with Deer Baby, above. Well said!

  11. I've always harboured a secret desire to live in an old church, too. But if I'm totally honest, I don't really want to. But it sounds so romantic. And that church is divine.

  12. this is just so DAMN nice.
    i must really win the lottery or get a VERY highly paid job.
    then i would just tell my husband :
    "if it isn't at least 100 years old, I'm not buying it sweetie, but see i got you a brand new car.."


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