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City-life or Suburbs - What do you prefer and Why?

We live on the outskirts of a small city in the mountains in central Arizona. We're in an area surrounded by several miles of Forest Service land so it feels remote yet we're only 8 miles from Costco and Trader Joe's. The picture is the view from our kitchen. We aren't truly rural but we're not suburbs either. In terms of assessing wildfire danger, we are in what's called the Wildland Urban Interface (WUI). The pros are outnumber the cons for us and many of the cons can be mitigated at least partially.
City-life or Suburbs - What do you prefer and Why?

    1. We live in nature.

    Lists of how to live healthier will tell you to spend more time in nature. We're already there. The trees, the peace, the hiking trails, the animals, all of it. We're already there.

    2. We have lots of room.

    The minimum lot size here for new builds is supposed to be two acres although there are some grandfathered small lots. Still though, small here is probably 3/4 of an acre which is still a lot of room.

    3. No crowds, no traffic and it's usually quiet.

    We're in a vacation area so some parts of the year or holiday weekends are busier but that's relative. There are no crowds. Turkey traffic jam.

    4. Able to help your community in a meaningful way.

    We have a volunteer fire department that serves our community. We have long roots here and being actively involved in the fire department is a great way to to help our neighbors, to give back to the community we love. There are countless other benefits that go beyond the scope of this challenge.

    5. We live where other people choose to vacation.

    Being able to live here, I feel like I'm getting away with something.

    6. Promotes self-sufficiency and living healthy.

    There are certain tasks where it can be difficult to get help quickly. While I'm not as handy as I should be, there are some basic fixes I can do. We maintain about 1/3 of a mile of road down to where it's county-maintained. This is mostly just plowing the road but every now and then a tree can fall and that needs to be cut up an moved out of the way. Occasionally heavy stuff needs to be lifted and there isn't really a neighbor to come help with that.

    7. Localism comes more naturally to a small community.

    With a little planning or for a job that is really big, other community members will help. A couple of winters ago we had a snow storm that dumped 18 inches in a couple of hours and when it finally stopped snowing it was close to 30 inches. There was no way my ATV/plow could keep up. A neighbor came with his front loader to clear our road for us.

    8. Issues and how we mitigate them.

    Suboptimal internet--we can't use streaming services but we still have the internet
    Power can go out for a week at at time--we have solar battery back up
    No cell signal--wifi calling struggles but works
    Wildfire danger--we have a 2500 gallon water tank and equipment, plus have 19 years of training fighting fires
    As mentioned we have to maintain the road--we have an ATV but may need something bigger
    A lot of snow around the house has to be shoveled--I actually love shoveling snow but most people don't
    Amazon doesn't deliver next day--this is just something we have to deal with, stuff takes a little longer to get here

    9. Self reliance and sufficiency are crucial

    Living here is much more difficult without common sense, without thinking about solving your own problems or preventing your own problems. Some things require persistence. For example driving here when there's snow, even if the road has been plowed can be very tricky, far more difficult than it looks. Getting stuck goes with the territory. On my road getting stuck is probably just a 10-15 minute problem but it can be a two hour problem and you have to be ready for that as one example.

    10. Things you need to make it easier

    Tools, a lot tools
    Extra building materials
    Extra drinking water
    Extra food
    A few gallons of gasoline
    Round trip to town, even though Costco and Trader Joe's are only 8 miles away, is at least an hour. The list above of things to have on hand are to avoid forgetting something in town and having to go right back.
    Did I mention tools?
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