The Good Life

letters to the editor

| September/October 2001

The Good Life Revisited

We offered a checklist of life’s underrated pleasures in our May/June 2001 issue (p.70), proposing that they contribute to human happiness just as much as wealth or fame or power. Many readers shared their own visions of the good life, some of which we feature below.

The sound of no cars greets me, coupled with a slanted beam of sunlight through the window of my cabin. Soon, my 6-month-old love-dog comes in, licks my face, and curls beside me. A stretch, a sigh, and a slice of last night’s pie. This is the beginning of a day in the good life. Rocky mountain juniper, lupine, and sage greet the senses. I climb on sandstone. I read a Gary Snyder poem, and an Alice Walker essay. I contemplate nostalgia, and run into an old friend who’s passing through.

Lori Mehler, Durango, CO

My friends and I often have "family dinner" nights. We all get together at one person’s house, cook together, eat together, and have wonderful conversations. These are the nights when we share childhood memories or other funny stories from our pasts. We also discuss current affairs, movies, music or any other topic that the flow of conversation introduces. I spent some time in Italy when I was in college and the family dinner nights I now enjoy reinforce the greatest lesson that I learned from Italian culture: Good food, good wine, and good friends are the greatest riches in the world.

Olivia DeJongh, Atlanta, GA