People ask me all the time, “Aren’t you scared, living out there in the country all by yourself?”
And I always think, “Noooo…aren’t you scared living in the city?”
Country crazies stick to
ourselves themselves; that’s why they live in the country. Except for the ones who were born here and just never escaped.
But city crazies are the social types. They don’t like to be alone, they like to come stand by you. And they can follow you home and you wouldn’t even know it. Do you think I wouldn’t figure it out if someone was following me home?
“Hmmm, that car has been behind me for 30 minutes, making every turn that I do, country road after country road… Well, I’m sure it’s just a coincidence.”
See my driveway? It’s there.
The city crazies would have stopped following me by the time I got on the highway, or if I go the back way, maybe they’d hang on 10 minutes or so, but I doubt it.
So, when people ask me that question, I always answer that most crime happens in the city, not the country. We don’t get a lot of muggings around here, and people don’t drive out all this way just to cause trouble. If something of yours gets stolen, you can almost guarantee you know the person who did it. And all the crazy killer types don’t much care to bother with us.
To which I always get some variation of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre thrown at me. “That’s not true! Terrible things always happen down some back road, in some little cabin, in the middle of the woods!”
Have you even been listening to me? Have you learned nothing from these movies?
Let me explain. No, let me sum up: that’s just the country way of saying, “Hey you, kid! Get off my lawn!”
My front yard.
Sometimes I do get the impression that the grass is out to get me.
Aren’t most of those movies about people who wind up in places they shouldn’t be? Maybe they get lost and knock on the wrong door for directions. Maybe their car breaks down in front of the wrong long dirt road. Maybe they even go looking for mischief – and then they find it. Whatever the case, the country crazies don’t generally come out looking for you. It’s not really their fault if you go find them, is it? Nobody invited you.
So no, creepy slasher movies that happen way out in the country don’t make me scared to live, well, way out in the country. I do, however, believe in “better safe than sorry.” So I have two security systems in place:
Louis: security guard, first defense, weapon of mass barking, attack dog (trained in both the I Will Jump on You I Can Reach Your Knees and Just Because I Won’t Come Near You Doesn’t Mean I’m Not Dangerous schools of combat).
Zombie early warning system. Crack the door and look in the mirror before you open up the storm door. Okay, this is not a great plan, but it’s what I’ve got.
Having said all this, I’ll admit that I get a little weirded out if Louis is acting nervous. Not so much when we’re outside, because I figure it’s just another animal that he’s smelling. But when he’s acting like that inside the house? That’s creepy.
And every now and then, I’ll come up that long, dark (cause it’s always night when this happens) driveway, pull up to the house, and the chills will go down my spine. It’s the sharks all over again: something unseen and menacing and utterly imaginary is stalking me. I’ll go searching through closets and under beds and around corners and into dark rooms. No boogie man is going to jump out at me! Better to face my fears and know for sure I’m foolish there is nothing to worry about. Of course I never find anything; I’m the only crazy one there.
Oh, and stay off my lawn.
Items of Interest:
What to do if you think you’re in a scary movie
Wherefore At My Door, Opossum, Oh Possum
A Snake in the Grass…err…Weeds