Now don’t get me wrong – I used to love living in Sydney.
It’s a beautiful city thanks to its amazing harbour and beaches – enjoyed when you can find a parking spot next to them of course. It’s also heaven for foodies.
And as I’ve blogged about before, there are things I dearly miss about living in the city. Like being able to drop in and see family and friends through the week, and having some of the incredible food choices available home delivered!
However, I’ve spent a good chunk of time back in the big smoke working on a project this month, and it’s made some of the things I don’t miss about living in the city glaringly obvious.
I know the list of things that annoy me about big cities would have looked very different had I compiled it 12-months ago, with COVID-19 dramatically changing the way we all live and work.
But my recent experiences with Sydney confirmed there are still some peculiarities and downsides to city living that haven’t changed as we’ve adapted to life in 2020.
So here’s my quick run down of things I don’t think you’ll miss if you choose to escape to the country.
The most obvious is road rage – there are angry drivers everywhere!
In Sydney, it feels like you can’t go five minutes driving on its roads without seeing or experiencing someone either sitting on their horn, hurling abuse, or dangerously tailgating another driver in retaliation for some slight. Or all of the above.
In contrast, in the four years I’ve lived in the country I’ve witnessed one episode of road rage. Yep, one. And it was a pretty lame one at that!
On the main road into our place, the drivers of cars travelling in the opposite direction give you a wave, even if you don’t know them.
In our nearest big town (with a population of 22,000) there’s rarely heavy traffic, so no one cuts up the inside lane to get ahead of everyone else, meaning there’s also no cutting people off.
On our main (and busiest) street, drivers stop to let people back out of parking spots if they see reversing lights, even when they don’t want the spot (yes, you can just park outside wherever you need to go in the country too!)
On the rare occasion when any of these informal road rules are not followed, we joke the driver has to be from out of town (I’m sure there’s a study in the making here on how congestion and anonymity levels make country drivers much less angry and ragey than the city counterparts!).
Other things I don’t miss?
The extreme cost of living.
As much as avocado toast has become the running joke for the exorbitant cost of living, you really do pay significantly less for this and other staple food when you order it in a country town!
The text walkers everywhere.
Maybe it’s because rural phone service is not always great 😉, but I rarely see people walking along glued to their phones in the main street here.
The constant rushing.
I swear people still walk twice as fast in the city (another study in the making I’m sure). Combine this with the text walkers barrelling along, and you have a recipe for disaster!
The constant unnatural noise.
I’ll take my noisy frogs and birds over the unrelenting sounds of construction, car horns and sirens any day thanks.
The lack of people connection.
In the city, it feels like people avoid connecting with the people around them when they’re out and about, keeping their eyes down and facial expressions closed. Here, it’s rare to walk down the street and not have a stranger look you in the eye and say hello.
The inability to see the stars at night.
It sounds a bit twee, but I really do feel sad that people living in the glare of a collective big city’s lights miss the incredible display above our heads most nights.
Have I got city living all wrong? Leave me a comment below!