Life in Mud Spattered Boots

A QUIET CELEBRATION OF LIFE ON A BRITISH FARM

The Beginning

Life in Mud Spattered Boots started as a place to tell some of the story behind the food we eat. I wanted to show the journey from a grain of wheat planted in a field to a loaf of bread on your table and to share a little about life on an arable farm in Essex.

The Middle

As I wrote in Why do I Bother in 2014, “… the main reason I write this blog is because I love being part of the blogging community. Through reading blogs I’ve been inspired to pick up my knitting needles again, to haul out my sewing machine and to have a jab at crochet; I’ve learnt new techniques for growing vegetables and tried new varieties; my recipe box is bursting with new things to cook and often our supper is influenced by something I’ve seen on a blog earlier in the day. Most of all, I enjoy seeing how other people live. What is a perfectly ordinary day for you may be extraordinary for others. I flit from snow covered Finland to the searing heat of Australia. I’m envious of your glut of fruit when it’s something I use frugally because they’re exotic and expensive to buy here. I have a list of places that I’d like to visit one day, not because they’re an amazing tourist destination but because I’m intrigued about the places you’ve written about and photographed and I’d like to visit the market or check out the art gallery. There are some bloggers I feel I know well enough, even though we’ve never met, that should we find ourselves in each other’s neighbourhood, we’d arrange to get together for a cup of coffee or a glass or two of wine.”

The End

Things have changed since 2014. Blogging has become more professional with blogs swamped by adverts, sponsored posts and self-promotion in the pursuit of income. Or as Domesticali wrote on Instagram “Blogs were so good before every bugger started monetising them. You know, the ones we wrote just for ourselves, when anyone else reading was a bonus.”

There are still personal blogs to read, but many more have been abandoned. Followers have drifted away and readers now bounce in to read a post that answers their particular question and bounce out again, never to return. The sense of community has all but disappeared, with a meaningless “like” replacing the banter and dialogue that came with comments. It’s all a bit soulless.

At the end of 2020, stuck in lockdown and bored witless by the banality of Instagram and Twitter, I pressed the pause button on my online life. I wrote a few blog posts in 2021, but my heart wasn’t in it. I don’t want to waste my life sitting in front of a computer and I don’t feel the need to share anything online, so it’s time to bring Life in Mud Spattered Boots to a close.

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