Cheek by jowl

The more of us there are on this planet, the bigger and bigger grow our cities.When writing my novel Going with Gabriel I often asked myself why it is that humanity seems universally to want to conglomerate itself into the densely packed areas it calls cities. Here are a few possible answers ... with my personal responses ...

  1. Safety in numbers. Really? Crime against the person is invariably more prevalent in cities than rural areas.
  2. That's where the work is.  Chicken and egg. If the hired help lived in the country that's where the factories and offices and shops would be.
  3. There's more to do in the cities. Museums, theatres, sports stadia etc etc. In an age of TV, how many times in your last year, say, did you go to a musuem, theatre or sports stadia? Could you not just as well have travelled there from your home in the country? (And do you remember the film 'Field of Gold? Motto, "BUILD IT AND THEY WILL COME").
  4. I feel more personally important, somehow, with an address in the city. No answer to that one, sorry.
  5. You meet people in cities, have more friends. Sorry again, but wrong. Country people tend to befriend each other more than do city folk - and to worry about a neighbour's visible status less as well. Which helps to make life for everyone more comfortable.
  6. I find the wide open spaces threatening.  See my answer to (1) And try getting closer to all that we call Nature. You'll probably like it! You should. It's your God-given inheritance.
  7. It's the herd instinct. Sheep live in herds, lions in families.
No, I don't consider myself misogenistic. I actually like my fellow Man, but one at a time or in small groups, not in massive crowds. I like Him / Her enough, in fact, to worry about how we are busily over-breeding ourselves into extinction without wanting to admit it; like an acoholic who refuses to stand up and declare, "I am an alcoholic".

There are already far too many of us, all wanting far too much of our mother Earth, and most of us are living cheek by jowl in cities.

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