September 2011


The State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, in a nutshell.

Greenwich Cove

Greenwich Cove

Yes, I fully intend on saying everything there is to say about Rhode Island in one lousy blog post.

Just kidding.

I spent three nights in Rhode Island and it’d be impossible for me to tell you everything that I did – honestly, there’s a lot more to Rhode Island than I expected, and, generally speaking I had a great time.

There were, by my count, only two really bad things: First, I got bitten by mosquitoes while visiting the Kettle Pond Visitor Center at the Ninigret National Wildlife Refuge – and although it is a wildlife refuge I did my best to kill off one specific type of wildlife whenever it came within range of my exposed skin.

James Burr House

James Burr House

The second bad thing was that I’d planned on going from beach to beach in the so-called “South County” of Rhode Island. In fact, I hit the road at 5:45 Sunday Morning – and found a beach where I wanted to take photos of the water and the sunrise (unfortunately the skies were not cooperating for good photography). The first beach I found, Scarborough State Beach, wasn’t open when I arrived, but I stopped to read the sign: when it was open it would cost $14 to park – if I had instate license plates. My rental car had out-of-state plates and it would have cost me an eye-watering $28 to park my car. Given that I only planned to spend short amounts of time at any one beach, this effectively told me that I didn’t really want to visit any of the state beaches.

Unfortunately I haven’t yet had time to go through all my photographs, but I will in the near future – cause I did have a great deal of fun and I saw some great things.

My first evening I decided to hit-up a PawSox game, the PawSox being the AAA affiliate of the Boston Red Sox – and if I were to lower myself to cheer for an affiliate of an American League team, it would probably be the Red Sox. Certainly I would cheer against any Yankee Affiliate, which, by the way, was the opponent.

I had a nice time, albeit by myself, at the game – playing with my camera, enjoying the atmosphere, until the end of the sixth inning when, for some awful reason, they decided to play “God Bless America” –an atheist, I find the song offensive. I know that it was instituted after 9/11 in order to, well, actually, I’m not really certain why it was instituted. It’s a bad tradition and it needs to go. (I might note that at the Indianapolis Indians game I attended, it was not played. I never thought Indiana would be ahead, culturally, of the East Coast.) I was, as far as I could see, the only person who refused to stand for the monstrosity.

Sunday, as I noted before, I drove down the South County coast. The drive was pleasant and I did stop a number of places – just not at State Beaches. I’m not sure who they’re kidding with parking fees that reach $28 for out-of-state cars. Maybe the demand really is that steep, or maybe Rhode Island really is that cash-strapped. Either way my alternative stops were, generally speaking, nice.

That included my stop in Wyoming – which was easily the most important stop on my tour of Rhode Island.

I returned to my hotel relatively early (but give that I started at 5am, not that early), and took a short nap, before deciding to head to the movies. I saw The Help at a nearby movie theater – for a Sunday evening (albeit Labor Day weekend) the theater was packed. The film itself was excellent. I enjoyed the film enough that I went out Monday and picked up the book and am now well over halfway through.

Rhode Island State House

Rhode Island State House

Monday was more sedate: I started with a tour of the Roger Williams National Monument – which celebrates Roger Williams, the founder of Rhode Island. He was opposed to having religion ordained by the state – which makes him a good man in my book. If he were alive today, the Republican Party would denounce him, as would many Democrats, but, because he’s dead, he has a National Monument.

I hiked up the nearby hill and saw the large statue of Roger Williams on a hill overlooking Providence. Funny because, as I recall, in the five-minute video they said they have no idea what the man looks like.

Roger Williams

Roger Williams overlooking Providence

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