This isn't impetuous noodling, I’ve given this concept plenty of thought ... and it has nothing to do with me loving my wife or the wonderful things we've done together. But there is that other path, the one not taken or even spoken about ... the 'what if' I had been selfish and done things my way.
So here goes, the things I’d do differently.
The most important one - I would never have children nor would I go out with a woman who has or wants kids.* And if someone visits and they bring kids with them the kids are more than welcome to prowl the local woods, chase coyotes and bobcats or walk in the bog. They can even help with forest maintenance by pulling out blackberry vines and stinging nettles.
Next, I’d never buy a house. Homes are gigantic boat anchors. However, if, by some quirk of fate, I did own a home, I’d remodel it to suit my interests. For example, I see no purpose in having a kitchen full of kitchen stuff. Out go the ovens, the 4 or 6 burner range and the air craft carrier sized countertops. There would be no eating nook, no large collections of plates and bowls, there would be no flower pots and no food processors, mixers and other assorted doohickies.
My kitchen would have a refrig, a microwave and a single one burner hot plate thingee. The fancy enameled sink would be converted into a large, deep industrial stainless steel model, making it easier to pile dishes in it and it would be perfect for cleaning paint brushes and other art tools.
I’d keep the pantry simply because it's perfect for storing paint cans and odds and ends destined for art projects.
Any groceries that need storing would fit in a single wall cabinet, now that it’s been liberated from stacks of plates and bowls.
Next, I don’t like windows. No, it’s not a privacy thing, I don’t like windows because they’re a total waste of wall space. Instead, with no windows, I’d have more area to hang art - paintings and wall sculptures.
Let’s see ... there would be theater grade music speakers in all rooms. Those extra bedrooms would be studio work places for different projects ... one for working on large canvases, a room for metal cutting and welding and a room for storing furniture grade lumber at room temperature.
For sleeping arrangements, there's no guest rooms, just the master bedroom with a king-sized bed, a huge TV screen, an awesome sound system and tables for computers, printers and all other electronic necessities.
The garage would have two cars: A 4-wheel drive of some kind, not for driving in snow, but for surviving the hundreds of oversized potholes found thoughout Seattle. The other car, An Audi TTS, would be for summers and driving the open roads anywhere but in Seattle.
There would be no lawn, shrubs or plants needing fussing with, trimming, watering or whatever else one does with greenery. Instead, I’d hire someone to bring in lots of giant boulders - enough to make them a fun climbing experience. Incidental plantings can be native species - most of which are slow growing and not terribly interesting.
That's basically it. I'm not a hermit or recluse nor do I ignore society ... but I would twist convention to suit my interests and that's all I want.
*In our real relationship it was me who wanted children ... I naively thought children would be a good idea.