While wandering today, I became enamored of the idea of sitting on the porch and watching the world go by, sipping an iced tea and reading a book in bucolic comfort. The Chautauqua porch sitting culture reminds me of what I saw in New Orleans: possibly because in both places, the most prominent architecture is from the 1880s. Robert told me today that if you stop to chat, sometimes people will even invite you up to have a sit.
Obviously there are many different kinds of porches in Chautauqua- some are screened in, some are just patios, and most are rather traditional wrap-arounds. Some have enough space for a dining room table, hammock, and desk, and some are just wide enough to put a chair on & hang your legs off the side.
In Mahopac, I loved to sit on the back deck in the summer & enjoy the weather while reading a book, so the thought of actually interacting with a large number of people going by my house is a wonderment. True, I may not want to chat with everybody on the street (or the porch) who wants to chat with me, but we take what we get.
And besides, I'm at summer camp for ten weeks. There is nothing bad about my life right now.