Just finished a soak in the hot tub, letting the massage of cascading 100-degree water wash away the stress, aches and pains of the day.

When we put our hot tub in shortly after buying the house, some told us it was a sign of decadence, of conspicuous consumption not in keeping with the simple mountain life.

Perhaps but we’ve never cared that much about what others say or think. For us, the hot tub is both therapeutic and enjoyable, a necessary part of life for two people with advancing arthritis and too many worn out body parts.

In winter months, the tub becomes a steaming oasis on a cold back porch, a bath of both relaxation and renewal.

Call it decadence if you want. We call it money well spent.