Greetings from Pittsburgh!
I generally suggest that new people click the "View New Content" button at the top of the page when they log in, to get a good overview of a range of topics. And to check the pinned Index to the Ink Reviews Forum. But I also warn people that we are all shameless enablers, who will happily help you spend your disposable income on pens, inks, paper, repair tools, sealing wax, ephemera, etc.
Depending on where you are in RI, it's only a couple of hours into Boston, which has a real pen shop (Bromfield's). I was there several years ago while visiting family in the Boston area at Christmastime. Took the train into South Station, and then the T, then you walk a few blocks. En route there's some sort of antiques store, and a place that is mostly sports memorabilia (but which had an Esterbrook dip pen set, still on its original display card, in the window... (well it did at the time, anyway -- now it's in my house... ).
Bromfield's is small, but the staff is nice. I picked up a Pilot Metropolitan and could try both an F and M nib (the stubs weren't on the market yet), three bottles of ink, and a Clairefontaine notebook with French ruled pages).
I also then (after a quick lunch at the Dunkin Donuts on the way back to the T station) took the T up to Cambridge and went to Bob Slate's, which is in Harvard Square. Picked up a 200 page Miquelrius journal there.
No affiliation with any of those places except as a happy customer, BTW. Well, except for the commuter rail -- the less said about them the better.... Although in their defense it meant I didn't have to DRIVE in Boston (shudder).
Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth
edited for typos
Edited by inkstainedruth, 17 June 2019 - 00:06.
"It's very nice, but frankly, when I signed that list for a P-51, what I had in mind was a fountain pen."