New York: Day 1

My trip to New York was rather hectic; I hardly had a spare moment. Sleep fell by the wayside. I took too many photos and had too many stories to fit into one post, so I’ll be going day-by-day over the next few days.

Our trip began at 8 A.M. Thursday morning. Of course, this meant that I woke up at 6:30 with a slight migraine. By 10:30 I was functional, on the train, and excited to arrive in New York.

Because we were attending a reception that night, we all wore our nice clothes on the train and throughout the day.

When we arrived in New York, we headed to our hotel– The Hilton Garden Inn– and dropped off our bags. The hotel was excellent. The rooms were fairly large by New York standards, and they served an extensive (complimentary!) breakfast in the morning. The location– near Macy’s and Penn Station– was good as well.

Thirty minutes after checking in, we were back on the bus, ready for our first museum.

Did you guess where I was earlier (in front of a Monet painting of agapanthas)? If not, the answer was MoMA, which is quite possibly my favorite museum in New York. We toured the modern collection, which included Impressionist, Post-Impressionist, Cubist, Futurist, Surrealist, and Abstract works. When we finished viewing the permanent collection, I headed off to see the de Kooning exhibit, which was well curated, even if he isn’t my favorite artist.

After the de Kooning exhibit, I stopped for a quick meet and greet with Balzac in the main lobby before heading out to the sculpture garden.

In my four previous visits to MoMa, I had never once gone outside to the sculpture garden. I clearly missed out. The multi-colored figures in my “Guess Where I’ve Been” post also came from the sculpture garden.

From MoMA we went to the City Museum of New York, where I saw an exhibit on Cecil Beaton’s work (the photo of me with the Truman Capote panel came from that). There were several other interesting exhibits to walk through at City Museum.

Our reception that night was at a beautiful home on the Upper East Side formerly owned by Woody Allen. The house was filled with contemporary photography and gorgeous design pieces. We chatted with both recent and older alums and explained our program in Washington. Toward the end of the program, the owner of the house and another alum invited us to a gala/party at the Jewish Museum a couple blocks away.

We couldn’t say “no” to a New York party.

The exhibition was on Jewish photographers from the 1930s and ’40s, so the party’s theme harkened to that time. Although we weren’t prepared for the theme, we ended up fitting the dress code fairly well.

We walked around in fake mustaches and masks they provided.

And tried our hands (and feet) at the dance moves of the era.

By 11:30 we were all exhausted and headed back to the hotel to prepare for Day 2– coming soon!

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