1. Your mother and father aren’t the only ones who meet you at the airport.

There’s Uncle Vinny, and Aunt Marie, and Uncle Dom and about a hundred of your closest relatives. You’re Italian for Christsake. Every moment, no matter how small, is cause for a celebration. Oh, and it will most likely be at Twin Oaks or the Calabrese Club.

2. You start wearing Sperrys and cable knit.

It’s not because you’re a prep, it’s because you’re a decent human being who understands how to dress in civilized society.

3. The drive from top to bottom starts feeling longer by the minute.

It doesn’t matter that it only takes an hour to drive from one end of Rhode Island to the other. If you’re going anywhere that takes more than 15 minutes to get to, you’re packing your overnight bag. (On second thought, screw the drive. Maybe you should just stay where you are…)

4. When you ask to “catch up” with friends, it’s really just an excuse to suck down an icy Del’s or to venture out to Fed Hill…

Or to ingest copious amounts of pizza strips (cheese is questionable), or quahogs, or Awful Awfuls. The list goes on.

5. You know everyone in town by first and last name.

It certainly helps that you’re related to half of them.

6. You give people your phone number sans area code.

You’re back in the 401. Rhode Island only has one area code so why even waste your breath saying those three extra syllables?

7. You start saying things like chowdah and lobstah.

It doesn’t matter that the rest of the world pronounces their “r”s correctly. This is obviously the way God intended these words to be said and you’ll leaveth or taketh away as you please.

8. You’re counting down the days until Victory Day.

So, you might not get why Lil’ Rhody still acknowledges such a random holiday, but you don’t care! The real victory here is that you have another day off. And you know what that means? Beach!

9. When you drive through the small farm towns, you stop at farm stands.

But these aren’t just any old farm stands. They’re honor system farm stands. And you don’t just drive up and take the goodies off the table, no. You always leave the right amount of cash for whatever you take. Even if it’s clear no one’s watching.

10. You can’t get the Block Island Ferry theme song out of your head.

So what if you haven’t done the touristy thing and gone to Block Island since you were, like, six. Those memories of greasy fish and chips and frolicking among the waves are meant to be cherished, people! “Sail away on the Block Island Ferry. Take a trip back to carefree times…” Damnit.