Thursday Dec. 14th, we took the subway to the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

I’d bought tickets online at the last minute in our hotel room and was glad we didn’t have to wait in that line. The coat check line was long enough. So many people there, always.

There are so very many wonderful things to see at the Met and you need at least a full day there, and preferably a few more leisurely days. But we didn’t have that kind of time, and headed straight to the Impressionists.

One of my favorites.

Mom says that this piece, by Toulouse-Lautrec, is her favorite.

After spending some time with the Impressionists, a good amount of time but never enough, I wanted to see the instruments. The last two times I was there the instrument rooms were under construction, and I was eager to see the new layout.

This marvel was outside the first room in a case. It’s a Bellaphone, a double tuba and baritone, which was “made to the specifications of tuba performer and teacher William Bell, who set modern standards for tuba playing in America. One mouthpiece receiver serves both instruments and leads to the rotary change valve; the other allows the tuba to be played independently. Two players can thus play the instrument simultaneously. ”

Very cool, but it seems kind of a shame that it’s in a museum, though; I feel like somebody should be playing it.

We heard music coming from the other end of the hall and turned to see that somebody had started playing the giant organ.

That was a delight; you can see the room below is full of armour, both for people and horses, and the music rooms are above at the left and right.

There were so many unique instruments in the first room that it took all my strength to not take pictures of every single thing. These are called “slit gongs,” from the island of Madura in Indonesia, and were used to warn of emergencies, using a mallet to produce a drum-like sound.

I took a picture of these beautiful kettle drums as we headed out of the first music room and down to the restaurant.

Here’s what the card said about them.

Even though the museum was pretty crowded we managed to find seat for lunch. Maybe because it was already 2:00, most people had already eaten?

Our view of Central Park while lunching, which made me want to go right outside.

First, we had to stop by the Temple of Dendur, where one of the “When Harry Met Sally” moments was filmed.

We’d only been there a few hours but had no more time for the museum. I asked a worker how to find the gift shop before the entrance and he said “Straight ahead and turn left at the Christmas tree.”

We did just that, but when we reached the tree it was surrounded by people singing Christmas songs!

I stopped to join in and then recorded a little of it. Now that was lovely Christmas moment in NYC for sure.

I saw some people with music in their hands and assumed it was a sing-a-long but as I tried to get closer somebody in a uniform admonished me “Stay away from the performers!”

Whoops. I realized that there were a few people in jackets who were doing the most singing, but it’s not like I was there to harass the performers.

After a quick swoop around the gift shop we were outside and on to many other things on our last day in NYC.

Ok then,

Mrs. 2024 Hughes.