1. Living in rural El Dorado County means that you live in the Mother Lode; the area where gold was discovered and where the California gold rush started. Neighbors have sluice boxes in their stream beds. People (still) quit their day jobs to look for gold. With the drought, the water level in area lakes is way down. Gold has been found (not a lot, don't get excited) in the exposed areas. Gold fever is spreading.
2. Living in rural El Dorado County means that many of the locals are descendants of the original Gold Rush miners and prospectors. Men with wild hair, tangled beards, and a mouth holding three tobacco stained teeth are a common sight. I'm told by my hairdresser that every local family has at least one family member matching that description.
3. Living in rural El Dorado County means that some residents have never left the zip code, have never finished school, and have.... interesting.... political views. There is a strong movement to secede from California and form a separate State: the State of Jefferson. The green flags wave in front yards. These proponents hold a strong anti-government and anti-tax view. Many of them do seasonal work; collecting an unemployment check when it is too hot, too cold, or too nice a day for fishing. Some of them fly Confederate flags. For me, this is the hardest part about living in rural El Dorado County; this mentality of entitlement and judgmental intolerance.
4. Living in rural El Dorado County means that in the early mornings and evenings, you have herds of deer, flocks of turkeys and quail coveys wandering around the house and barn. It means you can sit on your front porch with a glass of wine in the evening and watch wildlife as the sun sets in the pines. It means looking out the dining room window in the early morning and watching a deer eat the rose bush that is climbing on the porch rail. It means an endless supply of squirrels, rabbits, skunks and deer for Kersey to chase.
5. Living in rural El Dorado County means that you rub elbows with the Sierra Foothill wineries. It means that on blistering hot weekends you take refuge in cool tasting rooms and spend hours talking to the winemakers and owners over a glass of good zinfandel, syrah, mouvedre or barbera. It means there are wine pairing lunches and evening concerts every weekend. It means that the closet under your staircase is overflowing with wine.
Living in rural El Dorado County means that life is good; very good. A bit strange at times; but very good.