Tag Archives: NYC

Cruisin Round NYC

29 Aug

So Friday night I boarded this

the Paddle Wheel Queen, with these lovely ladies

to view sights like these

My friends Stef and Jess, and I, had bought tickets for an evening cruise with Marco Polo cruises off a deal from LivingSocial. We were told we would start boarding at 7, but because of the several other boats boarding at the dock we didn’t actually start boarding until 7:30. The best part of the cruise was getting to see the lights of the city from the boat, and spending time with friends.

Our purchase included a buffet and two free drinks. The buffet was standard – penne a la vodka, caesar salad, rolls and chicken. We ate our fill because we were starving by 8:30, but it’s so hard to eat healthy at events like these. And my two glasses of wine was a serious mistake that I felt the next morning. I think I would have been safer with beer. Later on, we really enjoyed dancing on the second floor of the boat.

So while I loved cruising around the city, I’m really glad that I didn’t pay full price for the cruise.

In other NYC news, I’m very excited for this

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Architectural Glory

20 Aug

Remember this? It’s almost labor day, and I have yet to fully use my key to the city. Time just seems to be slipping away. Yesterday, I seized the opportunity when I was on the upper upper west side to go to the Cathedral of St. John the Divine.

I hadn’t been here in over five years, since I went during freshman year of college to see a professor’s artwork installed here. I had the same visceral reaction when I walked into the nave of the church; I gasped.

I’m in awe of architecture like this. People built this. People created this. I think it’s absolutely insane.

After sufficient ogling of the architecture, I walked up the left aisle to use my key to the city. It would unlock the entrance gate to The Baptistery, ” a gift from the descendants of Peter Stuyvesant, the last governor of New Amsterdam- or New York City, as it is known today.”

There was something thrilling about opening a gate that typically you can’t. I felt sneaky, and cast furtive looks around as I opened the padlock.

I pulled the gate closed behind me. You can enter through the side door as well, which is always open. But it was really funny when a little boy yelled at me, “HEY. how did you get in there?!”

Since you weren’t in there with me, and the key to the city project is about allowing people access to things they normally wouldn’t, I’ll leave you with a few more photos of the Cathedral.

Museum Hopping

13 Aug

Yesterday I wanted to go to some museums I haven’t visited in months, or years. (Or ever). I wanted to go here.

Except I forgot that the Guggenheim is closed on Thursdays, breaking from the rule of no museum Mondays.

I waffled indecisively in front of the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum.

I missed the exhibit I wanted to see at the Jewish Museum.

Eventually I just walked down to that my safe bet, the Met. I never know where I’ll end up there, I tend to wander through the same hallways. I go up the main staircase, usually making a left turn into prints and drawings. Then I’ll just segue from there, making arbitrary turns.  Once in awhile I’ll end up underneath the Medieval gateway, which I’ll use as my marker. Yesterday in particular I tried to avoid the throngs of people.

While wandering through the museum, I started a train of thought inspired by one of the photographs on display in “Between Here and There: Passages in Contemporary Photography”.  The photograph was by Thomas Struth.

Thomas Struth. National Museum of Art, 1999.

The museum’s placard discussed how Thomas Struth focused on the secular religion of art, as well as the “appreciation of difference and cultural specificity.” This photograph, of an art loan between France and Japan, shows us how the Japanese chose to display Liberty Leading the People and how it is viewed. All the information presented to me, through both the placard and image, led me to thinking about this concept of art as a secular religion. I think it’s completely valid.

Even the Met’s architecture lent itself to this train of thought. All I could think of, as I looked at these arches where the churches I’d visited in Florence. Even the niche filled with flowers reminded me of the small niches for religious statues and offerings you would find randomly in a wall.

NYC. Florence.

And then I found myself in a wing where I had never been before, the Florence and Herbert Irving Galleries for the Arts of South and Southeast Asia. I discovered about the religious transformation of the region, as Buddhism spread from India to China.

I spent some time wandering the museum in reverential silence, thinking about the cultural significance of so many things.

Which led me to search out another cultural element. Food.