Wednesday, January 27, 2010

A Love Letter to Rhode Island


Today is the one year anniversary of New England Bloggers, a blog group I belong to. In honor of this special day Elizabeth, at Thoughts of an Evil Overlord, is hosting a New England Bloggers Carnival. The idea is to write a post about some aspect of living in New England. You can click her link to read what other New England bloggers have to say.

When I heard about this I just knew I had to write a love letter to Rhode Island. You see, I'm a native Rhode Islander who spent 14 years (from age 23 to 37) living in a place as different from RI as you can possibly get... Arizona. Now don't get me wrong, I had a great life in AZ. I had a ton of friends and a wonderful and full social life. But I always felt like a fish out of water. I never got used to the weather, landscape, architecture or the lack of seasons. And I especially never got used to the lack of water and how brown everything is there. Every summer when we would fly back to RI for a visit, I would be shocked at how green Rhode Island summers are. It would take me days to get used to it. And I swear I could smell the sea air as soon as the plane was flying over Connecticut. Yes. Through the sides of the plane. I really could. So, Rhode Island, here's to you.


Dearest Little Rhody,

There are so many things to love about living here in the Ocean State. I love that we are surrounded by water. I didn't realize how I rely on all that water to orient myself, until I moved to the desert. How I missed you. I love all the amazing history here in the 13th colony. You are full of historic buildings, landmarks, cemeteries, and sites of historical significance. I never gave that much thought until 1987, when I moved to the 48th state, which was celebrating its 75th birthday. I had to laugh. 75! Heck, my husband's grandmother was older than that at the time. I love the statue of the Independent Man atop your gorgeous State House. I love what he stands for - freedom and independence. I consider myself to be an independent thinker and I'm proud to come from the first colony to declare independence from the British. Not to mention that you were founded by Roger Williams on the principle of religious freedom. That's right. Williams was kicked out of the Massachusetts Bay colony because he had the gall to support religious tolerance. So he packed his bags, moved south and started a new colony, Providence Plantations. Which later merged with another colony, Rhode Island, becoming Rhode Island and Providence Plantations. And that's still our name today (even though some people are trying to change that). I think it has a nice ring to it: The State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations. Very dignified. There are so many more things that I love about you, RI. Your gorgeous beaches, your wonderful theater, all that the capital city, Providence, has to offer in the way of restaurants, museums, ethnic diversity and a cool college vibe, your many locally owned businesses, Del's lemonade, coffee milk, fluffernutter sandwiches and your quirky accent. Rhode Island, I love you like no other place on earth. You are my home, sweet, home and I hope that I will never have to leave you again. But if I do, you will always have a special place in my heart.


Love,

A Rhode Island Girl



The Independent Man

16 comments:

Sandy said...

Great post! Sometimes you have to get away from something (or lose it) to know what you had. As another native Rhode Islander who has never lived anywhere else, I think you did a wonderful job of enumerating all the best of our home...the State of Providence and Rhode Island Plantations! Note to revisionists: Leave the name alone!

Sarah Holiday said...

Very nice love letter.. Rhody would surely fall in love with your letter.. :) I hope we have that in here also.. Giving love letters to our beloved land is a noble thing to do.. :)

kittiesx3 said...

We stayed in Providence for three weeks right after our apartment flooded in October. We both fell in love with the town AND I learned that my mother had lived there as a little girl! I was even able to find their house.

If the commute into Boston wasn't so wretched by car or so expensive by commuter rail, Providence would have been a great place to live.

Anita said...

Aww Pam what a wonderful letter to your home state. I loved the imagery you drew for me! I'm ready to visit...........but the summer sounds better than winter!
Wonderful post.

Tinky said...

Pam, this is dear--and it makes me feel sad that yours is the only New England state I've never visited! Let's all treasure our homes as we visit other places. And happy anniversary, fellow New England blogger!

Karen said...

Rhode Island is also the home of The Atlantic Paranormal Society. I do love Ghosthunters on SyFy. :-)

I've always wanted to go to Rhode Island. It looks so pretty there. I'm a Cali girl at heart, but the politics and other issues here are making it a place I'd sort of like to be FROM.

Diane said...

Pam....a great piece on Rhode Island. I'm enjoying reading all of these posts; good job!

Elizabeth said...

I lived in Houston for 8 years, and I know what you mean about never feeling quite like you were "home". Great post, Pam!

Gail Foelsch said...

Great letter! You made me want to visit Providence this summer instead of Boston like we usually do with my Dad!

Gail

Midlife Jobhunter said...

The barren starkness of the desert can certainly put the green on New England. I remember moving to Connecticut from Utah. I thought I'd died and gone to heaven. The West does have its qualities, but oh, I loved your beaches. Water - it does draw one, doesn't it.

nan said...

Nice post! I remember fondly a vacation we took just a few years ago at Misquamicut Beach at a very nice family friendly resort with some college friends and their kids. Not too far away was a great little diner (I think it might have been across the Conn. border in Mystic -- Kitchen Little -- where I had the best fresh crab meat and cream cheese omelet of my life!) We visited a charming little merry-go-round in Watch Hill. Loved that area!

Mattenylou said...

What a nice post, a tribute to you home state. Even tho I've always lived in MA, I spent a lot of time visiting relatives in RI, while growing up,loving your history and shoreline. Always something nearby to keep us busy, or just to relax.

I remember seeing my very first real live elephant, Fanny, at Slater Park, years ago, with my Uncle Bob...nice memories.

Nice getting to know another New England blogger!

Tina said...

Oh Pam, what a beautiful letter. Next to Maine, RI is my favorite New England state. Hubbie and I met and fell in love and spent the first 2 years of our married life in Newport. You have captured the essence of that gorgeous state so well. And although I love Maine seafood, you still cannot beat a Rhode Island quahog anyplace. Happy birthday to all of us. and thanks for stopping by my blog earlier today.

solsticehome said...

Beautifully done Pam. Thanks for the little visit on my blog. Loved meeting you.

boliyou said...

Excellent letter to Rhode Island! As a new Rhode Islander, I'm just discovering all the great things about our state. Thanks for sharing!

iheartrhody.blogspot.com

Sarah Beth said...

I LOVE it, Pam! Thanks for sending me the link. I actually wrote a similar post, but I'm not in the cool kids club - I just couldn't help myself. :)

http://inhershoes7.blogspot.com/2009/03/i-left-my-heart-in-providence.html

 

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