The other side of the tracks

Nothing brings it home to me more that I am living in the country than being confronted with this.

A train line with a live rail and only a bar gate and a sign warning me to stop – actually there are two signs, but it’s the big red one on the left that yells at you to take a little care when crossing over. The one on the right is probably a back up, in case someone tries to sue them.

The station is little more than a platform and a rain shelter. There’s no one here dispensing tickets, no one around outside of the hourly scheduled stops.

And this is what epitomises the fear I feel about living in the countryside. It’s not a fear of being mugged – that’s much more likely in the big city stations where people are milling around in all directions. It’s a fear of the unknown, a fear that maybe this small town life won’t be enough.

But after I took this shot, braved the bar gate and crossed the line (don’t worry they don’t run the live rail across the crossing) I headed up a dirt track into the woods beyond, and up past houses you’d never imagine would exist beyond the railway line. Within a few minutes the path led upwards and I was looking out onto rolling Derbyshire countryside. And suddenly it made sense. There hasn’t been much time in the past few weeks to get out and enjoy it, but that will change, and the countryside will be out there waiting whenever I’m ready.



  1. It all sounds idyllic to me, but that’s probably just romanticism. The fear of the unknown, I understand… come to think of it, aren’t most of our fears to do with the unknown? An interesting post. Unusual.

  2. Dave – I think you’re right. Fear is all about the unknown.

    stewie – it’s getting more like home by the day

    uphilldowndale – I think brief encounter might have closed.

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