The hectic pace of urban lifestyle has brought with it so many stresses and anxieties that many people are consciously going back to a simpler rural way of life associated with the country. Apart from a close-knit community and stable family ties, a country life allows one the comfort of natural, healthy and unhurried living. So is you are single and keen to move to open spaces, here are a few tips on meeting a country man or woman.
Decide what country means to you
If you live in a large city, there are probably several nearby communities that would be considered "country." However be careful of your expectations from such a place since one person’s ideas about the country life may differ from another. Country usually implies the area outside the commute zone and beyond the suburban sprawl that surrounds most major cities. Once you've passed suburbia and traveled about another hour, you're most likely in the country. Mostly the country is identified by presence of farms, ranches, animals and wide-open spaces. However to many, the country need not be an agricultural community at all, but one that is centered on nature or even art. A country can include anything from a tiny hamlet of few hundred people to a small town of ten thousand. Some will farms or communes while some may have a pretty town square or an impressive courthouse flanked by attractive gardens and a wide expanse of lawn. If a strong economic base is on your list of essentials, focus on towns with a population between ten and fifteen thousand.
TIP: Match.com has millions of members from USA, Canada and Europe including those who live in the countryside.
Get the local news
If you are keen to meet singles from the rural community to which you have just moved, you need to be aware of the social, political and economic context of the place. And your best bet of doing this would be to subscribe to the local newspaper. Arrange for a mail subscription and if that's not possible, find out where to obtain the newspaper locally. Small-town newspapers are usually published midweek, so if you can't pick up a copy till the weekend, make arrangements to have one set aside. You can pick up important cues of the social climate and dating scene by reading the "Letters to the Editor," feature articles, and columns written by local people. All this will tell you which are the places like pubs and stores where the local singles hang out and about important events in the social calendar of the community like festivals, dances, parades and fetes.
A small town or village is likely to have just a couple of really popular hangouts – this may be a pub, a bar, the café or in a really small place, several things rolled into one like the post office which also doubles up as the main store and coffee shop. So a good idea would be to become a familiar face at these hangouts which will help you spot the singles in the community since inevitably they would troop in here for a drink or a snack. Even if you cannot meet the singles at the first opportunity, get talking to other locals like the store keeper, the barman or the post-mistress who will let on valuable nuggets about who is dating whom and who is on the verge of breakup and thus open to mingling again. The advantage of a small community is that people are usually clued in on each other’s personal affairs and so after a few rounds of drinks with the local patrons, it should not be too difficult for you to get all the news about the singles scene in the community.
A great way of meeting singles in the country is to get involved with community initiatives which will not only throw you in contact with the locals but also endear you to them for helping out. Better still, choose volunteer work that is tailored according to your interests for instance if you are a book lover, offer your services as a part-time librarian; on the other hand if you are fond of gardening, you could get involved with maintenance of the parks and landscaping in the community. Even if you are reluctant to commit yourself on a regular basis, you could still come up with other volunteer ideas like taking a batch of home-baked cookies to the local fire station or sheriff’s office or getting involved in the organizing of country fetes, festivals and fundraisers.
If you are thinking of moving to a rural community as part of your search for country singles to date, it would be a good idea to bear in mind your lifestyle needs that you cannot do without. If for instance you are a person to whom art and culture are important, you may feel unhappy in a primarily agricultural community. Each community will have things you like and other things you don't. You can obtain a variety of information about communities through the local Chamber of Commerce, mayor's office, nearby community college, extension office of the state university, library, bookstores, and individual civic and business leaders. All this will let you know from before what the community offers for instance whether the community has cultural or art agency or is part of the national "Main Street" movement focusing on downtown redevelopment. Or if you are keen on alternative therapy, find out beforehand whether the place has a yoga studio or a homeopathic pharmacy. Other items on your "must have" list may include education, the cost of living, real estate, or the local economy. While it is unlikely that a rural community will be built on retail, it may be based on tourism, agriculture or even a factory or two. Many small towns are as proud of their industry as they are of their agricultural base or cultural center. It is a good idea to make sure the area meets your needs before you fall in love with a country man or woman rather than hooking up with someone and then realizing that you cannot move there after all.