Newport Manners & Etiquette: Utterly Casual Yacht Wedding, Whatever Gender Restrooms, No-Show Guest
Wednesday, August 02, 2017
Q. At a seated dinner recently the man whose name was on the place card next to me didn't show up. It was a table of ten seated boy-girl, boy-girl, etc. His date didn't show up either, so there were two empty seats at our table of ten. A gate crasher took one of the vacant seats. He was the bride's hairdresser and was an entertaining fill-in. Someone suggested I move over a spot. I did but at a big table like that it is hard to equally talk to the person on your left and the person on your right when there is an empty space between you. I was impressed that the host came over right after we sat down to say he was sorry that the missing couple had to leave because of an emergency, and asked if it was alright if he sent over a gate crasher.
The hard part for me was that the only actual person I sat next to was stuck with me and I with him. What would you have done, Didi? AV, Newport, RI
A. At some point before the entree was cleared, you could have suggested that the one person seated next to you switch seats with a person across the table. You could say, "Let's shake up the table a bit and switch you with George when the wedding cake is served." It takes social skills to make such a switch, but if you take the lead you can make it happen gracefully, if not humorously.
Doctor Patient confidentiality
Q. My husband and I are currently without health insurance and he's been taking an over-the-counter anti-depressent called SAM-e, which makes him irritable and at times either whiny or overly-anxious -- or both. His primary physician doesn't know he is taking SAMe. But I feel I should tell him. My husband insists it is as good, if not better, than any of the expensive prescription antidepressants he took when we had health insurance, pre Obamacare. Should I just be happy that he is no longer depressed and grin and bear the whining and anxiety. Long-Suffering Wife, West Bath, ME
A. The US Food and Drug Administration doesn't sufficiently regulate over-the-counter herbs supplements, so the jury is still out on whether antidepressants such as SAM-e are totally safe. What you can do is to persuade your husband to talk to his primary care physician about SAM-e to see if any medication he is also taking works with the SAM-e, or against it. For instance SAM-e could possibly affect bleeding risk if your husband is also taking any drug that affects bleeding, such as aspirin or blood thinners. Or if he takes a drug to control his blood pressure.
What you can say to your primary care doctor is this: I'm concerned that SAM-e may not be working well for Jack. Can you please talk to him about what he's taking, how much he's taking and how often, so that he can get a reality check on his mood swings.
His doctor may not know he's taking SAM-e, so you want to assume for the safety of your husband that his doctor knows about the SAM-e.
Utterly Casual Yacht Wedding
Q. My boyfriend and I are invited to a wedding taking place at sea on a yacht. What do we wear? What should we know about a yacht wedding? The dress code is Utterly Casual. Since there are 150 guests we don't want to be underdressed or overdressed. We're not sure what Utterly Casual means for a wedding on a boat! PH, Manhattan
A. You can assume that the bride and groom will be dressed casually, but more formally than their guests. They want everyone to relax and have a good time.
- Most important is footwear. Shoes should be broken in so they won't slip or slide on slippery high polished flooring. Don't wear spiked heels that could damage any wooden floors.
- Your boyfriend would wear a navy blue blazer or any lightweight linen jacket, a collared open shirt and dress khakis, colored or white trousers with possibly a rubber sole shoe. A tie would be optional.
- As the bride will be dressed super casually, you wouldn't want to wear anything that might be dressier than what she's wearing. A jumpsuit would be terrific or any dress that moves well in the wind and on the dance floor that's not puffy with fabric or tacky with sequins.
It goes without saying that sunscreen and a hat are a must for a daytime wedding at sea.
Whatever gender restroom
A. Yes, say it loud and clear: "Do either of you have toilet paper you can share?" Chances are good that one or the other will listen to your need.
Didi Lorillard researches manners and etiquette at NewportManners.com for her upcoming book NEWPORTMANNERS.
Related Slideshow: 20 Free (or Almost Free) Things to do in New England This Summer - 2017
The Cliff Walk is one of Newport’s most famous attractions is its gilded age mansions lining the coast. Entry to the mansions will cost a fee, but with the Cliff Walk, you can enjoy views of the mansions with amazing views of the water all for free.
The 3.5 mile long path runs behind the mansions on the eastern shore of Newport. It is a National Recreation Trail – the first in New England! The majority of the walk is easy, but be sure to wear good shoes; the sand can make the path slippery.
PHOTO: Connie Ma/flickr
The Freedom Trail is a two and a half-mile walking tour that connects 16 significant Boston landmarks.
Interior access to the Freedom Trail's sites is also free, except for the Paul Revere House, the Old South Meeting House and the Old State House.
The Freedom Trail is a great way to get exercise, explore Boston and learn about history, all at the same time.
If you buy tickets online they are discounted at $12 for adults, $10 for students and $6.50 for kids ages 6-12.
Old North Church, located on Salem Street, is Boston's oldest surviving church, and it's also the place where Paul Revere gave the signal that the "British were coming," on April 18, 1775.
Once he gave the signal, two lanterns were raised high, meaning that they were coming by sea to Lexington and Concord, not land.
This event began the American Revolution.
Providence WaterFire has grown to be an iconic Rhode Island event. Starting out in 1994 to celebrate the 10th anniversary of First Night Providence, it has grown to run continuously, once a month, from May-November and boasts over 80 blazing fires in the middle of the Providence River.
WaterFire is a not-for-profit organization that aims to creatively transform Providence – and they do! Each event is accompanied with music by artists from around the world, varies food stands and art stands to browse as you stroll along the river.
People have been drawn to the rugged coast of Maine throughout history. Awed by its beauty and diversity, early 20th-century visionaries donated the land that became Acadia National Park.
The park is home to many plants and animals, and the tallest mountain on the U.S. Atlantic coast.
Visit Acadia and hike granite peaks, bike historic carriage roads, or relax and enjoy the scenery.
The park entrance fee is FREE from August 25th to the 28th.
Besides that, admission is $12 while those 15 and under are FREE of charge
Merrimack, New Hampshire
The Budweiser Clydesdales are the most recognizable mascots in the beverage industry and a visit to the Clydesdale Hamlet at the Anheuser-Bush Brewery will get you a free meeting with them.
For this 21 and over, you can take a tour of the brewery and see it result in free beer at the end.
If you have kids who are not 21, they can visit the horses who are there year round. They will get a huge kick out of it.
PHOTO: Billy Zoom/flickr
Take a hike at Purgatory Chasm and see the unique landmark that formed naturally approximately 14,000 years ago. Theory has it that the chasm was formed near the end of the last Ice Age with the sudden release of glacial meltwater that had been dammed up. Pretty neat! The chasm is ¼ mile long and runs between giant granite rock, sometimes standing at 70 feet high! You do have to pay to park ($5 MA residents, $6 for out-of-staters), but exploring the reservation is completely free.
Take a 30 minute tour of Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream factory in Vermont and see where your favorite flavors of ice cream are made. It is just about ice cream season after all.
The factory is open year round and admission is just $4 for adults, $3 for seniors and kids 12 and under are FREE.
If you want a little bit of an outdoor adventure, hike to Royalston Falls in Royalston, MA. The hike itself isn’t too long, but it can be challenging. It leads you to a remote gorge created by prehistoric glacial meltwater and 45 foot plunging waterfall within a half-hidden ravine. If you’re up for the adventure, the destination is far worth the trek.
See a replica of the world's firs submarine and learn about it through films before heading about the USS Nautilus for a free audio tour.
Nautilus was the first nuclear-powered submarine and the first vessel to travel 20,000 leagues under the sea. The ship is now open to the public year-round and is free.
Rhode Island’s own version of Boston’s Freedom Trail, follow the painted green line for the Independence Trail. The 2.5 mile tour of historic Providence “takes you over four centuries of history, architecture, culture, and folklore.”
Don’t worry about where to begin, the route is circular so you can start anywhere! Along the painted green trail on the sidewalks you’ll find red emblems with a phone number and a location number.
Worcester’s Canal District is home to eleven buildings that originate from the early 1800s. Preservation Worcester wants you to enjoy the history available to you, for free! They offer a Canal District Walking Tour, By the Canal, to expose you to the stories of the people and historical events that created Worcester. You can pick up a free tour brochure at the Preservation Worcester office on Cedar Street, download a printable version of the tour and tour map, or download audio files to phone to do an audio tour.
Runs from Worcester to Providence
The idea behind the Blackstone River Bikeway was to create a bike path running 48 miles, from Worcester to Providence along the National Heritage Corridor. It links the Blackstone River and the Blackstone Canal and will eventually connect with the East Bay Bike Path in Rhode Island. The path isn’t completed yet, but riders can enjoy the segment that is, free of charge.
Listen to some great music during the NIMFest Concert Series at King Park Beach in Newport.
NIMFest concerts are held Sunday afternoons from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the King Park gazebo on Wellington Avenue.
Concerts are presented free by the City of Newport featuring the best in regional and local talent.
The 2017 series celebrates women artists in folk, bluegrass, jazz, blues, rock, and everything in between.
Head to Concord, Massachusetts and then to the Sleepy Hollow Cemetery where you will find "Author's Ridge."
Author's Ridge marks the final resting place of legendary writers such as Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry Thoreau, Nathaniel Hawthorne and Louisa May Alcott.
New Haven, Connecticut
Take a free tour of Yale University and while you are there be sure to walk through the Yale Art Gallery and the Yale Center for British Art.
If you time it correctly, you might even get to attend one of the Yale School of Music’s nearly 300 annual performances.
The Sprinkler Factory is not actually factory, but rather a gallery. Though, its namesake does come from the real-life sprinkler factory started by Howard Freeman in WWII. Why? Because he embodies “the spirit of innovation.” With the aim of providing the public with a place to display and enjoy the visual arts, the Sprinkler Factory hosts exhibitions once a month, and they’re always free.
South Deerfield, Massachusetts
Yankee Candle Village headquarters are located in South Deerfield, Massachusetts, where they call themselves “Scenter of the Universe.”
Walk around the store for hours, exploring all the different showrooms with varying scents. The complex is something to see.
Be warned though, you may be tempted to buy a candle or two.
Runs from Providence RI to Bristol RI
If you’re looking for a dose of natural beauty and healthy activity, try going for a spin on the East Bay Bike Path. The first bike facility to be under the State, it is a 13.8 mile trail that connects 8 different parks from Providence to Bristol. Do the whole thing or just a stretch and cross over bridges and by coves on the Narragansett Bay shore. The bike path is open year round.
Photo: Michael St Jean/Flickr
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