The Good Life
Only the more mature reader will remember the British TV show, The Good Life. This was a show about a couple, surname Good, who decided to live off the grid in their suburban house, much to the annoyance of their upper-class neighbours. They quit their 9 to 5 jobs and slowly turned their home into a mini farm while creating a lot of humour in the process.
This was well before today’s fascination with the environment, self-sufficiency and alternative lifestyles. But there was something about the Good’s lifestyle that people liked and even dreamt about doing it themselves. Although very few would ever take such a leap. The idea of living off the land sounds good in theory, but few could actually do it.
Over the last few decades, it has been the “lifestyle block” that many desired. A bit of land and endless possibilities. This usually ended in selling the property a few years later when they realised their weekends were spent mowing lawns and endless maintenance. Doing chores with all your free time quickly loses its appeal.
I am not one to talk. The closest I ever got to anything sustainable was a small vege garden that meant lots of coleslaw over summer and not much else.
In my business you tend to see what is important in life. The things people remember and how life was with them in it. It usually isn’t how much work one did or how perfect they were. It tends to be the small things, the incidental events that happened in life. Things like a holiday or when the car broke down or when you got lost at the church steps in Nelson and had to wait hours before your parents decided to collect you. Ok – it may have been minutes. But at least I knew not to move.
Life is made up of the stories and memories we create. It is so easy to imagine that it is the big important events that mean the most. When in truth it is more often than not unplanned small things that we tend to remember.
Sometimes it is the hardest trials that bring the greatest rewards. Which is easy to say afterwards, but at the time is not. Sometimes it is the surprises that change everything rather than the planned expectations. Sometimes it is taking a risk and jumping in to give something a crack.
At this moment, my greatest challenge, besides running a small business, is having two chickens, named Barbara and Margo (from The Good Life). To be fair Kath is taking ultimate responsibility because she knows what she’s doing. My role is support and mealtimes.
Don’t come to the end of your life wondering “what if”. Take a risk to risk succeeding. If you fail, try again (this does not work with parachuting – which is why I won’t be doing that). I prefer quality time with Barbara and Margo.