I watched the first part of ITV’s new series, “The Real Good Life”, last night and it wasn’t half bad. Essentially, they’ve taken three families, given them a little bit of basic training and persuaded them to give up jobs etc. and attempt to become self-sufficient. Their mortgages are being paid for the year that the experiment runs and they’re also being given financial assistance until their first crops are ready but other than that they’re on their own.
So far, the couple most likely to succeed as far as I can tell are the pair who live in Hertford, whose names I have, alas, forgotten. They don’t have any children, whereas the other two couples do, and most of the kids are less than enthusiastic about giving up junk food and expensive luxuries in favour of hard graft and simplicity. They also didn’t seem to be frightened of hard work, the husband having shovelled four tons of manure onto the garden while his wife was out.
There was also the couple where the wife seemed pretty keen but the husband was more content to have his mates round to drink homebrew while she struggled in the garden. When he finally did make it outside he spent just twenty minutes with a rotavator, making a complete pig’s ear of things, before retiring for the day, claiming that the machine wasn’t the right one for the job. Lazy git.
Now I’ll freely confess that when I’ve lived in places where I had a garden I’ve been less than enthusiastic about getting out there and getting my hands dirty, but there’s a big difference between doing it for pleasure, which I really don’t understand, and doing it because it’s your living, which I do. I’d really like to see all three families succeed and I hope I will. I’ll certainly be watching.