Quite a lot of my trainees enjoy gaming, as I do too. And very often something will come up around comparing playing a game to learning to drive; using hand / eye coordination, gaining experience by attempting missions / manoeuvres, levelling up… That sort of thing.
Any gamer who’s played on one of the most recent generations of console, or a pc, will vouch for the frankly awesome graphics and playing mechanics of, say, state-of-the-art racing or role playing games. They can and often do offer a totally immersive experience, allowing the player to while away a few hours lightyears away from the trials of a troubled world.
Whilst I’m no expert gamer, the degree of immersion into a virtual universe I’ve sometimes achieved has led to the occasional weird ‘crossing over the streams’ moments (I especially remember, a few years back, whenever I was in a pub I’d be looking at other drinkers expecting a dialogue pop up to appear beneath them. I stopped playing Fallout for a bit after that)
But, even though I’m still partial to a stopover in Los Santos now and again, my out and out favourite game to lose myself in right now is, and don’t laugh, Farming Simulator.
My uncle was an arable farm tractor driver all his life, spending 50 years on the same Lincolnshire farm. My brother used to work on farms. Another uncle used to collect churns of milk for the long-gone MMB. Other than that I’ve no idea where this longing to be ploughing the fields of Sussex in a Case Magnum or harvesting the plains of North America in an Ideal 9 came from. But there you go. It’s great fun and almost complete escapism. And driving a Claas Lexion combine, in even in the virtual world, is a lot of fun 🙂
However, last weekend, my ever-patient daughters and I got a rare treat. Before it started drizzling, then raining, then ruining the day’s harvest, we got to see one of these beasts up close and dusty! And being a pathetically simpering ‘fanboy’, I had to record it a little bit (including very dorky commentary)!
Thank you girls, and thank you to the farmers on site and John Roberts Contractors. Easily pleased I may be these days, but this made my day 🙂