Tonawanda News

Columns

August 28, 2013

CONFER: Farm living is the life for me

Tonawanda News — I quite often get into discussions with folks from the Big City who wonder why I choose to live in rural Eastern Niagara County which is, in their eyes, so far away from everything.

Those folks from Amherst/Williamsville cite how they are just blocks, or a couple of miles at most, away from every store, restaurant, theatre or any other amenity that young families would ever want. “Quality of life” is their recurring mantra.

They see my rural way of life, and that lived by residents in neighboring small towns like Middleport and Newfane, as almost alien.

I see theirs in the same light and wonder what sort of quality of life can be appreciated solely on the basis of consumption. Millions of Americans dwell in densely populated suburbs and cities. What good are all of those places when the average family might be able to afford to visit them once, maybe twice, a week, or delve into debt to do so more often?

To country dwellers, quality of life is more than just the immediate and accessible consumption of a bunch of fancy dinners, consumer goods or the hippest movie. It’s about appreciating the simple things in life, mostly making memories with family and friends in the out-of-doors.

I look at the postage stamp lawns and jail-like fenced-in properties of the Williamsville types and wonder who would want that. Those of us who live out in the country have lawns and properties larger by multiples, where we can appreciate regular close encounters with wildlife and let our children roam, playing and learning in great amounts of wide-open space, rather than the confines of their living rooms and in the constant company of the latest video game.

Similarly, I look at the lack of public play space in the Big City and I take pride in our abundance of ball diamonds, soccer fields and playgrounds out in the country. While kids in our neck of the woods get together by playing sports, the suburban kids hang out at the mall.

Text Only
Columns
  • mug - adamczyk.jpg ADAMCZYK: Kenmore is a village made of bricks Buffalo and surrounding environs have brick buildings galore, often in the process of repurpose. Whole neighborhoods made of brick await development, redevelopment, gentrification, whatever wand will be waved at them to make them function again. Structures here tend not to be razed; they fall down occasionally but typically simply stand and wait.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • leffler, scott.jpg LEFFLER: Justice is blind -- and deaf and dumb I've always been intrigued by the concept of justice. I say concept because it really seems more theoretical to me than practical. One man's justice is another man's nightmare.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • confer, bob.jpg CONFER: Don't go soft on teenage criminals

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • DuVall, Eric mug.jpg For Sabres, more suffering is on tap

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • tucker, barb.jpg TUCKER: Taking down trees 'disheartening' Several readers have questioned the City of Tonawanda's tree removal program. An email to Jenna Koch, who represents the third ward and checks into any query on the city, explained the program.


    April 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • mug - adamczyk.jpg [Duplicate] ADAMCZYK: Letterman was on my side The announcement that Mr. Letterman is retiring from his groundbreaking television program, sometime in 2015, is already old news, but it gives opportunity to ponder a few truisms about history and modern life.

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Leffler Mug 041114 [Duplicate] LEFFLER: 'Need to know' a double-edged sword Inquisitive doesn't begin to describe me. I must know everything. About everything. I hate being in the dark. I guess that's what makes my career choice so very obvious. I think "must know everything" is at the top of most journalists' trait lists.

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Wallace, Amy BW mug WALLACE: Airplane coverage has gone awry I don't know about you, but I am so sick of the cable news stations' constant coverage of the missing Malaysia Airlines jet.

    April 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • DuVall, Eric mug.jpg DUVALL: Making a list, checking it twice Maybe I was thinking about David Letterman's impending retirement. Or maybe it was because my brother posted it to Facebook. I spent a couple hours the other day crafting two top 10 lists, of my favorite books and movies.

    April 9, 2014 1 Photo

  • DuVall, Eric mug.jpg DUVALL: Letterman leaves immense legacy in late night Television watchers -- and I don't mean people watching TV, I mean people who follow the television industry -- have been speculating for years about what would happen when late night legend David Letterman decided to retire.

    April 6, 2014 1 Photo