Our stay in Rhode Island was very short, just two days long. The visit here was all about the mansions. You can spend days touring all the mansions that have been turned into museums and there are even more mansions that are privately owned as family homes. There are so many mansions that sometimes the developers buy the properties and just demolish them.
Demolition was supposed to be the fate of the Elms mansion that we visited, but the preservation society saved it. Unfortunately Lukas did not take any pictures, but you can take a virtual tour at newportmansions.org.
You can find even more examples of oversized houses and excessive luxury in the photo album. Too bad we do not know anyone personally here so no one invited us over for dinner :(.
As we were driving right in the middle between extreme luxury on the seashore on one side and vast emptiness of the ocean on the other, it made me think about what I have, what I want and what I need. While I do not have even a small fraction of stuff that would fill a mansion, at the same time I have all that I actually need.
Does a stable balance between the two extremes of obnoxious luxury and poverty exist? I am talking about the feeling of having enough. Or do the personal needs keep expanding indefinitely and, as you fulfill one set of desires, you keep finding new ones? When we left the Bay Area, we turned away from our previous lifestyle, all the stuff we had accumulated and reset our needs from the beginning. Now the needs are limited by space, but the desires are starting to grow again.