Kat has some good points and thoughts here, thanks for sharing Kat.
Patricia Feager wrote a post this morning that got me to thinking about what is truly essential to life, or at least to life in today's world. Her post was related to gun retailers, but my mind began buzzing around the question "What is truly essential?" So here are a few random thoughts....
Ahh, food. Glorious food. For me, essentials include fresh fruits, fresh vegetables, meat, fish, poultry, bread, coffee, tea, etc etc. I love to cook, and in "normal" times go to the store every day or two since I don't plan way ahead. Since this current pandemic started though, I've been planning my meals for the week and going to the store once a week to purchase everything I need. And while I've had to change out some ingredients due to lack of availability, I have plenty of unique and interesting things to make. BUT.. is any of that truly essential? I would be very disappointed if I couldn't buy what I buy, make what I make, and eat what I eat but...
There are other people who eat every meal out of the house. I know a few of them. And there are those who might not eat out every meal, but they eat out a lot. And when they eat home, they just make a few simple things. Or they use frozen dinners and cook those. That's the way those people handle their culinary experiences. And normally that's fine, and many of them can still do the same thing. Right now restaurants are providing take-out food, and many are delivering. So for those people, essential could mean having the ability to get food they don't have to cook, but....
Many years ago, most people knew how to provide their own food. They had vegetable gardens, fruit trees, and knew how to hunt, cut and cook their meat. They fished. And they had chickens, goats or other livestock. They went to the local store for the few things they might not have been able to personally provide - like flour or rice. Or they traded with neighbors. But in general, they used what they made or had. They were very self-sufficient. Today there are very few people that can do the same thing. Most of our country lives with tiny parcels of land, or in an apartment with no room to grow vegetables. And most people do not have access to land with game, and if they do there are a lot of rules about when they can or cannot hunt. So things are different today than they used to be and.....
It all comes down to - what is the essential food requirement? In reality, the need is calories, preferably healthy calories containing protein and nutrients. To survive, I don't truly NEED to make poblano/sausage burritos, portabello paninis, eggplant parmesan, homemade pizza or delicious mouth watering steaks. People who eat out normally don't NEED to eat out in order to survive. If I am really honest about what is truly essential. I could certainly survive on a much simpler diet. But I wouldn't feel as though I was fully living because, to me, part of the excitement of life is trying new and delicious cuisines. I don't want to just survive; I want to enjoy. And what about beverages?
We need water. That's all that's required to survive. We don't need beer, wine, liquor, seltzer, soda, juice, kombucha, or any of the other things we all buy and consume on a regular basis.
We've come to believe those are all essential but they're not really. In order to stay alive, we just need water. In order to enjoy our life, we need more than that.
What about utilities? Are they essential?
Water. Many moons ago, people had hand-cranked wells, or they walked to the river to get water. Now? We all expect to be able to turn on our faucets and have water come out. Hot water, cold water. We expect to be able to wash our laundry, take hot showers, make iced tea and wash the dishes easily.
Electric. "Ahh, the joy of reading a book after dark from a small candle or lantern" said no one ever. Is electric truly essential? Couldn't we make due with candles, hand washing clothes, battery operated radios? Wouldn't it be possible to forgo air conditioning, electric heat, stoves, hair dryers, washing machines and dryers? Sure, maybe for a few days. But electricity has become an essential part of our lives. Without it, we'd be lost. Same with...
Internet. Many years ago, Internet was rated as more desirable than TV. Many were surprised by that, but think about it. If you have Internet, you can stay in touch, research, do your job, listen to the radio, watch live TV, see a movie, control your lighting, and more. Is Internet truly a "must" in order to live? We would all continue to take breaths if the Internet was gone. But it's such a part of life, it's now become essential.
My rambling mind hit many other topics, things that might be deemed essential by a government entity, but that are not really "essential" in keeping us alive. The fact is that we are no longer self-sufficient. We cannot distill our own liquor, grow and kill our own food, fix our fences, churn our butter, repair our cars, take care of our own medical issues or sew our clothes. We need grocery stores, liquor stores, gas stations, medical facilities, restaurant food, utilities and home improvement stores to be open and available. Those things are not essential in giving us breath, but have become required to give our lives breadth.
Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat
Licensed Broker, CBR®
Blackstone Realty Group - brokered by eXp
P.O. Box 10458
Kalispell, MT 59904
eXp Realty - New York
406-270-3667 (MT) and 914-419-0270 (NY)