I had no particular reason to go down to WaterFire Providence, but it was a Saturday night and one never really needs an excuse to visit and see the fires burning fiercely reflected on the water. That’s the nice thing about living in Rhode Island; there’s no need of explanation. Sitting at the basin I thought about being here at this time in my life. I had that warm feeling that everybody knows who I am. Each person here shares this great feeling of belonging, part of the web of memories which make up the life of RI. In this world, nobody needs to be a stranger; everybody can be linked in some way with others. Even a visitor, for visitors came here to RI for a reason, do they not? They would be associated then with the people whom were here with them observing the bright fires.
I am fortunate, I thought, and I turned to say the couple next to me, “We are lucky, aren’t we?” The couple nodded and smiled. “We are very lucky to be where we are,” the woman said. Here in RI, away from the bustle of big cities one can feel themselves lapsing again into the rythms of sweet life, a life much slower and more reflective than life in a big city. Reflective like the flames in the water. There is still time and space to think in Providence, life seems so much easier here where one might look out up to the sky and watch thin wisps of clouds float slowly across the sky, or listen to the gentle lapping of the water and feel so alive. This is what it means to live in Rhode Island; when the rest of the world might work itself into a frenzy of activity, one might sit still, in the space filled with reflecting braziers burning in the night. There is a place for everyone.
– Everett Hoag