I retired to Orcas some years ago, been required by medical necessity to reduce my work load and having been quite correctly advised that the islands natural beauty and ambience would perfectly suit my temperament and requirements. Not being a motorist the size and topography well suited my ease of mobility; I am and always have been an exuberant pedestrian. I was most fortunate to easily find suitable rented accommodation that exactly fulfilled my small but sometimes particular requirements of an adequate but intimate space, and a hearty welcoming for both my odd self and my rather rotund and elderly male beagle.
Immediately upon arrival I was greeted with interest and inquisitiveness, my friend and acquaintance count rapidly growing from a one to a goodly dozen. Having been a rather privately inclined US resident of some twenty years, no more than a handful of close peers was always quite acceptable, I was and am particularly wary of the over enthusiastic expansion of intimates, finding openness an alien emotion to my nationally stereotypical highly suspicious and singular nature. Thankfully, the years on the unquestionable paradise of Orcas have softened my social reticence somewhat and I have been very thankful to include a large number of individuals into my personal circle, being wholeheartedly surprised at residents patience and understanding for such an unapologetic eccentric persona as myself.
So to surmise, I was able to migrate so somewhere psychologically, ethically, and financially suited, long term prospective, immediately affable with the possibility indeed probability of expanding sociability and feeling of nativity. Orcas effectively hit all the positive bullet points on my list of immediate and long-term requirements, without any obviously worrisome negatives. I wholeheartedly recommend the same careful expediencies to any other prospective émigré, just wanting to be an islander is not enough, you must be able to exist independently for the foreseeable future without qualm or necessary assistance.
Orcas, like many another island paradise is utterly welcoming, accepting, but not in the slightest forgiving. The problems you have on arrival you will carry till the day of your departure, there is no magical spring of redemption hidden in some secret valley to wash away your sins and shortcomings, the addictions and needs that haunt you in other worlds will remain a heavy and consistent burden upon your shoulders here. Forgiveness, guilt, remission, and debt are still self-inflicted and adopted, the adequate seed will thrive and flourish, the less hardy will wither and pass.
Understand that once you take root, have become part of the weave of the fabric, then you must become magnanimous, inclusive, indefatigable, a clarion of your own past aspirations, the greeter, empowering, facilitating, that perfect grit that when properly utilized polishes unfinished gems into islanders, makes visitors assets rather than liabilities, pleasures over annoyances.
Be aware that any reticence about expanding populations, displeasure at visitors, animus at seasonal variables, is but elitism of the most blatant variety, base superiority run amok, the very antithesis of community.