Things I'm Grateful For || Luxuries I Often Take for Granted

1. Hot showers and baths

Recently, I have become much more appreciative of how much of a luxury it is to be able to take a hot shower or bath on demand, within the comfort and privacy of my own home and bathroom. I used to think nothing of it, if anything I would be annoyed by what felt like the constant need to be showering to stay clean.

But a few things helped me realize what a luxury and privilege it is. My grandpa told me that when he was a kid, one of his chores was to go into the basement and to shovel coal into the furnace to heat the house. He also told me that while at sea in the Navy, he would have to take cold showers. The fact of the matter is, heating up water is super energy intensive, and as a result really expensive unless you have a cheap source of fuel. Seemingly miraculously, we seemed to have solved the many problems needed to distribute hot water almost universally. We have pipes to every home to channel the water, reliable electricity to run pumps, reliable gas/oil/electricity to heat the water up, cheap and safe water running through the pipes, safe and effective sewage treatment, and of course people working diligently to maintain and improve these systems.

It truly boggles my mind to think that only 100 years ago, so say in 1923, that the majority of people in the US were not afforded what we now consider to be a basic tenant of hygiene.

The shower is one of my favorite places to escape, de-stress, and simply exist away from the daily grind of having to be productive. For this I am truly grateful.

2. Unemployment Benefits

Saying nothing of the healthcare/insurance systems, capitalism, or my socioeconomic privilege, I am grateful that we have organized society in such a way to at least provide some baseline income for people to meet their basic needs while unemployed. While I believe there is much to be desired with this system, as well as many other economic systems, I am glad that the State has decided that it is in fact within its best interest to not have its citizens be completely exposed to the boom bust cycle.

I mostly just wanted to write this to talk about showers, but tried, and failed to come up with more than 2 items on this list. Still, I think it's worth posting. Also, the shower appreciation mostly came from watching The Last of Us and realizing how nice it really is if you don't have regular access to a shower.

Zach Bellay published on

3 min, 446 words