My image of New York has been built up by years of hearing about it and seeing it in pictures and movies. It's always been a distant land of bright lights and skyscrapers; a metropolis that never goes to sleep. But it finally occurred to me this summer that I can visit New York and see the city for myself. A group of Hinckley Interns and I travelled to NY for a weekend and it turned out to be one of the busiest weekends during my summer, and if nothing more, it definitely made me want to revisit NY in the future again. The list of things to do and see is just never-ending!
There were many highlights from the trip, but my number one is probably fulfilling my long time wish of visiting the Metropolitan Museum of Art. So many of the artworks I have learned in my art history courses have been taken care of and housed by the Met. It has a long standing history of collecting various renown artworks and continues to be the largest art museum in the U.S. The Met was the first place I visited with my roommate, Alex, after getting some breakfast at a diner and walking across Central Park. As I had imagined, the Met was a huge museum that covered various geographical areas and time periods. I decided that a tour would be a good idea, so we went on an intern led tour that covered some modern art pieces as well as Islamic art and European art. Over and over, works by Pollock, Van Gough, Mondrian, and Monet popped up in the tour which was amazing to see in real life. We also entered the Japanese art section and saw works by Hokusai and Kano Tanyu as well as beautiful lacquer ware and ceramics.
Some other things we did that weekend were going to Times Square and watching a broadway show, Chicago, which was a dark tale about fame and fortune. The singing, acting, and dancing it it were great because well...its broadway!
We also went to the 9/11 Memorial Museum which was an phenomenal museum that outlined and presented the build up, details, causes, and aftermath of 9/11. Artifacts and photographs, first hand accounts, videos, and recordings were set up all throughout the exhibitions. It was a lot to take in and was emotionally heavy, but valuable to be able to understand in such detail. The fact that 9/11 was during my lifetime, something that I can clearly remember, and an catastrophic event that occurred right where the museum was, added to the emotions that I experienced while walking through the museum. It was one of the most well executed and organized museums I have ever been to.
We also went to Chinatown and Little Italy where all the diversity of NYC seems to converge, creating unique communities that are difficult to find elsewhere. I loved walking through this part of the city and seeing the unique history of NY embedded within the cityscape. Not only the diversity, but the energy and business of NY was an interesting experience that made DC seem much calmer. Visiting NY was like a weekend sampler for when I go back to explore it more!