Everywhere else, if not actually dead, they were contemplating the afternoon milking, hoping on the whole that it would be fine for the Saturday cricket match against Sandon, dropping tea-bags into the pot, playing with the baby, asleep. Rural life is a mystery until one realizes that nearly all of it , everywhere in the world, is spent in preparing for and recovering from short but punishing bouts of the tedium inseparable from the tasks of the land, or rather their failure to give the least sense of achievement, as it might be a lifetime spent washing up out of doors. I have never understood why anybody agreed to to on being a rustic after about 1400.

Kingsley Amis, The Green Man.

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