History Unexplored and Quality of Life
It’s been a running theme — of accelerating urgency on an individual basis — whether Rhode Island’s vaunted “quality of life” justifies the cost of building a life, here. My view is that high culture, wonderful scenery, history, and so on don’t amount to much for families that must work so hard simply to survive that they can’t take in the sights.
A recent article in the Life section of the Sakonnet Times brought the question to mind:
We walk or drive by remnants of our storied local history every day without giving it a second thought. Some — like the hitching posts along Bristol’s High Street and elsewhere — are “hidden” in plain view, while others are more camouflaged.
The article goes on to list a number of sites and artifacts in the East Bay, and if you’re like me, perhaps you’ll add the search for such things to a list already including various performances, museums, festivals, activities, and readings that you’d pursue if you could just get past the next mortgage with a little money and time to spare. Personally, I’m doubly affected by the desire to incorporate the rich local settings and traditions into stories and essays.
Oh, well. It’s beginning to seem, as the song goes, that “someday never comes.” The question remaining for Rhode Islanders is whether it’s worth fighting for reasonable governance and a thriving economy that would allow folks other than tourists, the rich, and public sector workers to enjoy what Rhode Island has to offer, or whether it’d be better to find a location that would balance what one wishes to do with what one can afford to do.