Many people, after years of living in the city, spending their days at the office, their evenings in front of the TV and their weekends out shopping or at the theater, decide to up sticks and move out to the country, where they feel they can benefit from a simple life, friendly folk, clean air and good old rugged mountain ways. There seems to be something purer about country living in city folks’ eyes. They long to get away from sophistication and one-upmanship. They like the partisan attitudes after having spent their lives apologizing for their statements and trying to deal with the wishy-washy vagaries of urban conversation.

What they don’t consider is just how much they don’t know about country living. They are people who have spent their lives being able to rely on the police, firefighters, plumbers, electricians, contractors, lawyers and other professionals to take care of them and do the jobs they can’t do. It’s very difficult for them to come out to the country, where to the untrained eye every tree looks the same and healthy food is indistinguishable from poison, and be able to live as country folk do.

The first thing that you need to do is make some friends. Country folk may indeed be suspicious and skeptical about city slickers thinking they can just start buying up their town and trying to change their ways, but they won’t be rude about it. You’ll be greeted with warmth and politeness. They’ll expect you to be straight up with them. If you show that you’re keen to fit in and you’re interested in learning, you’ll soon have lots of offers to help you learn. You might be invited out hiking on a trail with bears to prepare you for how to react in case a bear approaches your property. You might be invited to help do some work on a fishing boat and then go out on the lake when it’s done.

If your skills in the handyman department are lacking, invite one or two of your new friends to work on a project with you to bring you up to speed. Let them help you choose which tools you should buy first – although you can do your own research too in this field, just take a look at This is better than offering your unskilled help on their projects as you could be wasting their time and putting their investments at risk. You’ll be able to learn from their tips and advice and perhaps complete your first project as a gift to them as a way of thanks.

Community is very important in rural areas. Don’t risk antagonizing people, especially when you’re still a newcomer. If the community shuns you, everything suddenly becomes ten times more difficult for you. All of a sudden nobody will know the answers to your questions or have time to help.

Learn about different kinds of pump, how to chop wood, how to get fires going and start playing with motors and engines. Someone who spent their youth playing with car engines has more chance of repairing a generator than someone who spend their youth in coffee shops and at the mall.

Forget about your day-to-day appearance. You’re going to have to get dirty. Don’t be a slob but don’t panic about mud on your shoes and oil on your jeans, it’s going to happen every day from now on. Don’t panic and start whining as many city folk do when things don’t appear to be going as planned. You need to be flexible and resourceful. Just because you think certain things should be a certain way doesn’t mean they will be. The laws of nature and the ways of country folk are not going to be changed by you having a mini breakdown.

The more you enjoy living in the country, the quicker you’ll start to get to grips with it. If you have a great time when your neighbors take you out fishing, it won’t be long before you’re discussing different types of tackle with them and building your own grill so you can have them over for a barbecue with the catch of the day.