Years ago when I used to backpack with Mitch, I came to appreciate how little one needs for sustenance. Food, water, a companion, shelter, and in my case, a good read or knit. (A raincoat and the nip of an adult beverage didn't hurt, either.)
When we take people to Westcliffe, I am frequently nonplussed by comments that run along these lines: I could never live here.
That was me in my 20s, when I thought I needed cinema and theater and restaurants and malls and book stores, when what I really needed was a solid boyfriend, meaningful work and good friends and family. Though I still wonder whether I'm suited to rural life, I've come to appreciate that the things that give me real joy are mostly quite simple: A nap with the cats. An hour of trouble-free knitting. A morning of productive writing. A good book and the time to read it. Cooking and sharing a wonderful meal. An afternoon walk when you can feel the ground bursting with spring. A great conversation. OK, and skin care.
Westcliffe has all these things as well as an active fiber community (though if a fine urban-style yarn shop were to open there and thrive, it wouldn't break my heart) and good people who bring casseroles when there's trouble.
Just curious. What are your essentials?