We're very lucky to live in the "suburbs" of North London, where we can enjoy the best of both worlds. In less than an hour (provided the trains are running on time), we can be in the center of London, but within about a ten minutes' drive, we can be surrounded by countryside. Still, despite our suburban postcode, we still suffer from certain negative aspects of urban life: traffic, pollution, gradual over-development, etc. We also just happen to be under a flight path. I admit that I don't notice the planes that much on a day-to-day basis, but The Other Half is particularly sensitive to this kind of thing. It's not like the planes really fly that low. We attended a wedding in Hounslow, which is near Heathrow, back in November, and boy, do those planes really fly low. I was surprised that I couldn't reach up and actually touch them.
But since the travel chaos caused by the volcano erupting in Iceland, I have definitely noticed the planes. Because there haven't been any. I can actually hear the birds chirping and children playing in their gardens. Unfortunately, we still have the road noise to deal with, but here it is on a perfectly lovely -- and still sunny -- Sunday evening and the only thing I can hear is the classical music coming from the radio in the dining room.