I can sleep on a clothes line.

When I first moved to the countryside I was surprised at how many things were different from town living, one of the most obvious to me was how quiet it was. As we speak I am sitting at my desk typing and I can’t hear a sound from outside and this is not because we have the most modern double glazing, it is because there is no noise outside.

It sounds like we live in the wilds of the countryside but no, we live in Hatfield Heath which is a fairly large village near Bishops Stortford in Hertfordshire, although we are lucky in that our house is fairly well set away from the road.

Coming from London where even in the suburbs there is constant noise virtually twenty four hours a day, when first arriving in the countryside one is very aware of how quiet it is especially at night where you could hear a pin drop, except when a fox is having sex which is a very strange noise and surprisingly noisy.

I am exceptionally lucky in that most of the time I have no problem sleeping, I think it’s fair to say I can sleep on a clothes line as the old saying goes.

Image result for Victorian sleeping on a line

The above picture explains where the expression sleeping on a clothes line comes from, one could pay 4d (four pence old money) for a nights sleep on a very thin mattress of straw, or if you were even more poor a night on the line for 2d.

Life in Victorian Britain was fairly harsh for the poor, although obviously the rich had a somewhat better time of things. Many of the upper classes would dress in their “common clothes,” for a night of sightseeing and entertainment in the boarding houses and streets of the slums, hence the expression, “slumming it.”

Compared to this, people today don’t know how lucky they are, which reminds me of another expression once used by one of our ex Prime Ministers, Mr Harold Macmillan who in 1957 told the nation, “you’ve never had it so good.”

God only knows what expression he would have come up with to describe the current level of wealth enjoyed by most people, “rich as Croesus,” springs to mind!

 

 

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About The Diary of a Country Bumpkin

I am a retired actor, although to be honest I only retired because I wasn't getting any work and the option of becoming an unemployed actor/waiter at my age was ludicrous, especially as my waiting skills are non-existent. Having said I’m retired, I don’t think there really is such a thing as a retired actor for I am still available for work, I just don’t have an agent or any connections with regards to obtaining any worthwhile work. I have over the years done student films when there is nothing else available, always low paid (if at all) the only incentive was always the promised copy of the finished film for your show reel which nine times out of ten always failed to materialise. I spent many years looking after my aged mother who had dementia, hence the lack of acting work but shortly after her death I was lucky enough to run into an ex-girlfriend of many years ago and our romance blossomed once again, resulting in us getting married in 2013. My move to the countryside inspired me to write The Diary of a Country Bumpkin which tells of my continuing dilemmas in dealing with the rigors of the countryside from the unexpectedly large number of pollens, fungal moulds and hay products waiting to attack the unsuspecting townie. I enjoy writing, see my play Dulce Et Decorum Est Pro Patria Mori on The Wireless Theatre Company, The Plays Wot I Wrote and The Battle of Barking Creek both available on Amazon.co.uk and am very fond of classic cars so my ideal occupation would be acting in a film I had written set in the 1930s/40s, we live in hopes. I am delighted to say that since venturing to the countryside where space is not quite the premium it is in town, I have due to the availability of two double garages acquired more classic cars to form a small collection the pride of which are a 1947 Bentley Mk VI and a 2000 Bentley Arnage. My various blogs and websites are continually evolving and I’m sure that by following the appropriate links you will find something which will edify or amuse.
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