Taking the plunge off the Cliff Walk in Newport, RI

The beach-house-less vagabonds are at it again: Just a few weeks after our trip to Cape May, my girlfriend and I headed up to Newport, RI, this past weekend. It was a fantastic weekend for a number of reasons.

One of the modest summer cottages in Newport, RI

One of the modest summer cottages in Newport, RI

Continuing our run of good luck with bed-and-breakfast establishments, the Attwater Villa was fantastic. It was located walking distance from much of what we wanted to do, and the couple who run the place were amazingly nice, friendly and helpful.

After some shopping and a couple of beers at the Red Parrot while avoiding a downpour, we had dinner at Brick Alley Pub and enjoyed both the food and the atmosphere.

Then came Saturday, Aug. 1, 2009: a day that will live in infamy (in a good way).

It was an absolutely gorgeous day, so we headed to the Cliff Walk, a four-mile-plus hiking trail that could not be more breathtaking. The ocean is on one side and many of Newport’s famous mansions are on the other.

The walk was a lot of fun, and we had the perfect weather conditions for it. Oh, yeah, and by the way, I started out the walk with a girlfriend and ended it with a fiancée.

A little background: We’ve been dating for almost two years, and we’ve lived together for a little over two months. And if I hadn’t been a layoff victim back in October, this probably would have been done months ago. But things are what they are, and I decided it was time to stop letting my financial situation stand in the way of destiny.

So I stopped holding out for the “traditional” engagement, with the “real” wedding ring, and bought a really nice, sterling silver ring with a blue stone to bridge the gap. It’s not going to be “the” wedding ring. I was calling it a “promise ring,” but once the ass hats on More to Love, a horrendous reality show on Fox, stole that term, let’s just refer to it as a “transition ring.”

Cliff Walk

Cliff Walk

We got to the end of the Cliff Walk, and I stopped on the pretense of resting and stretching out my knee a little bit, when what I was really doing was waiting for a few straggling people to clear out so we could have some privacy. I didn’t really take a knee, because I was already sitting on some steps while she was standing, but I basically just pulled out the box with the ring in it and said, “Let’s make this official.” She had no clue it was coming, and it took her a few seconds to process. Obviously, she said yes, or there would probably be venom dripping out of this blog post.

Back to Newport: After a quick lunch and a couple of cold local beers (I loved Edison Light and refuse to believe it’s light beer), we took a sailboat cruise around the harbor, which included a great view of the house where Jackie O. spent her summers.

I can’t wrap this up without talking about one of the best meals I’ve had in months. The Mooring was flat-out incredible. An appetizer called Bag of Doughnuts managed to combine zeppoles and seafood and make it unique and delicious. The Native Scallop Chowder was off the hook. And my entrée, a special salmon dish with pineapple teriyaki glaze, was to die for.

In summary, if you have the chance to go to Newport, do it. I wish we’d had a few more days up there. But be careful: You may return home engaged!

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7 comments on “Taking the plunge off the Cliff Walk in Newport, RI

  1. Deb says:

    “Obviously, she said yes, or there would probably be venom dripping out of this blog post.”

    Hilarious. Congratulations to the both of you!

    Great photos. We absolutely LOVE Newport, especially the Cliff Walk. (I thought it was six miles but maybe I’m including the neverending mansion walk that followed in the hot sun while we had to pee.) What an incredible way to celebrate your relationship and propose marriage.

    Your ring story is actually very thoughtful and wonderful. Screw tradition– it’s always the thought that counts.

  2. […] previous night, my lovely fiancée and I were driving to check out a possible location for the wedding. As often happens while […]

  3. gogopance says:

    better late than never, congrats to you 🙂

  4. […] highlight of 2009, by far, was getting engaged. It was a remarkable day, spent in Newport, R.I., and a remarkable experience that I will never […]

  5. […] those who don’t know me and/or aren’t regular readers, I’m getting married April 25. I’ve wanted to go to Hawaii since around age eight or nine, and that’s where we’re […]

  6. […] just over two months away from my wedding, and while I will not let any of this crap ruin our wedding or our honeymoon, it’s still […]

  7. Walking on the edge of the cliff must be done together with the people who are already experts. Cliff in Newport is one of the dangerous cliffs I ever see. I will not do anything that endangers the life I’m currently on vacation. I will hire an expert.

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